Monitoring Mobile Payments is a way to stop crime and give access, but we haven't figured out a way to keep up with the changing landscape.
What are you passionate about? [public]
I'm passionate about building strong relationships that allow me to serve as a connector between people and ideas. I also enjoy thinking about and tackilng complex problems and breaking them down it manageable bits. Ultimately I think that the relationhships you build act as the tools to solving complex problems.
Your Prize Concept
If you are selected as a Visioneer, you will develop a prize concept in collaboration with a company sponsor, fellow innovators, and the XPRIZE team. This may or may not be the challenge concept you propose in this application.
What do you prize? [public]
I prize security solutions that protect people without slowing them down.
What Grand Challenge do you propose a prize competition should solve? [public]
I think the Grand Challenge that a prize competition should solve is the problem of tracking mobile payments in places that only require a SIM card and an ID to open an account.
The benefits to solving this problem would be two-fold. First, it would cut down on the ability of individuals or groups to launder money that could go to support criminal enterprises. It’s likely that some users of mobile banking accounts are using false identification to set up their accounts or that they are transferring money for illegal reasons. An example of this type of mobile payment is M-Pesa, a service offered by Vodafone to users in Kenya and Tanzania.
Mobile payment systems like M-Pesa sprung up to fill a gap in the marketplace that was left open due to lack of access of large parts of the population. While traditional banks require some fluency with established institutions, mobile payments and banking are available to anyone with a mobile phone. To this end improving security around these payments ensures that access to these new institutions will remain available.
What would the world look like when the Grand Challenge is solved? [public]
When the Grand Challenge is solved mobile payments are as secure and traceable as payments made through the means of traditional banking. It doesn't mean creating regulation, it means having visibility into patterns that allow outside groups to ascertain what a payment is for, but in a secure manner. The key is to come up with a solution that is not cumbersome to the point where it slows user experience but allows law enforcement to be able to track payments and make sure that these payments are not being used to fund illegal activities or organizations.