Financial technology is one of the faster moving sectors in Canada, where startups launch often, innovation is disruptive, and the competition is fierce.
With so much news, data, and events to cover across the country, Fintech.ca leans on active professionals in the field to help keep our audience properly informed and up-to-date.
Fintech.ca goes beyond news reporting to gain deeper insight into matters of interest from experts across Canada.
Our last edition of “Expert Wisdom: Fintech” featured the always-hot topic of real estate.
In this Autumn 2023 edition, experts weigh in on the fintech trends of digitized identity and electronic commerce.
Digital Identity Improvements
Our digital identity and data security standards aren’t keeping pace with online activity, says Chandra Rink.
As the Managing Director of ATB Ventures, Rink leads a multi-disciplinary team of product, research, marketing, and design specialists who bring their expertise into experimentation and commercialization of ATB Ventures’ portfolio.
In her role, she has noticed that cyber-crime and identity theft is on the rise in Canada. For example, reported losses from fraud were up nearly 40% year-over-year in 2022. And across all the industries that experienced rising fraud in 2021, digital fraud against financial services companies increased the most, up 218% according to data from TransUnion.
“Increased volume of digital transactions has Canada at an inflection point when it comes to the current state of verification,” Rink writes for Fintech.ca, pointing toward “unprecedented pressure on citizens and businesses alike.”
The way we tackle these challenges will have ripple effects on every corner of our digital life and digital commerce experiences, she points out.
“From the most complex tasks—like verifying a bank account—to the most routine experiences —like buying a coffee, or connecting with new service providers—personal data has become the lifeblood of our society’s digital interactions,” Rink says. “We need a new data paradigm—one that puts robust digital identity verification tech, digital credentials, and new standards of user-driven privacy at the forefront.”
Since Canada lacks a federally regulated digital ID program, upward of 30 million people operate with paper-based IDs while opening bank accounts, checking into hotels, and crossing borders. Canada is poised for modernization when it comes to combating fraud.
Rink envisions data and privacy standards that are regulated fairly across public and private sectors, and tools for identity consent accessible to every citizen. Canadian institutions like DIACC (Digital Identification and Authentication Council of Canada) and PCTF (Pan-Canadian Trust Framework) are putting this notion into motion.
For citizens, getting access to digital ID tech means more than having visibility and choice regarding who is accessing their personal data, says Rink.
Emerging Tech to Transform Commerce
The E-commerce landscape, which once played second fiddle to brick-and-mortar retail, is now steering the industry’s future, according to Simon Song.
“As we approach 2024, a projected 24% of all retail purchases are expected to transition online,” writes Iong, who serves as Head of Global Growth at Shoplazza, for Fintech.ca. “This shift isn’t confined to local borders, either: an astonishing 57% of online consumers are making purchases internationally. The sheer volume of 87. million individuals who opted for online shopping during Black Friday in 2022 illustrates this seismic shift.”
Transformative trends are paving the way for this commerce revolution, he says.
Dark social, where discussions and product shares occur in private channels like WhatsApp and Instagram, has risen as an influencer. Meanwhile, both B2B and B2C customers are increasingly looking for tailored online shopping experiences. The 2022 Personalization Report reveals that about 49% of shoppers are inclined to become repeat customers after receiving a personalized buying experience from a seller.
“Shoppable videos” and live video commerce are also emerging in 2023. And of course there is automation.
“With 61% of global companies embracing automation’s vast potential, be it in marketing, warehousing, or other domains, the scale of transformation becomes palpable,” Iong believes. “Automation has gone beyond mere convenience—it’s about redefining efficiency, with robots optimizing warehouse functions and software enhancing inventory management.”
Novel payment technologies such as Apple Pay and other digital wallets are also transforming the E-commerce ecosystem.
“This shift towards instant and frictionless payments, where customers can check out with a single touch or glance, underscores a broader trend: the demand for seamless, integrated shopping experiences,” Iong posits. “As these platforms gain traction, the traditional barriers of online purchasing—inputting card details, shipping addresses, and more—are becoming things of the past, indicating a profound shift in consumer expectations and behaviours.”
The continuous progression of E-commerce heralds a future dominated by adaptability, ingenuity, and tailored experiences, the commerce expert says.
“As elements like personalized recommendations, voice-enabled shopping, augmented reality, and AI-guided methods integrate effortlessly with sustainable practices and customized experiences, the forthcoming era of E-commerce is set to be both thrilling and groundbreaking,” Iong concludes.