Over the course of history, black swan events, including pandemics and economic recessions, have often been responsible for changing the trajectory of businesses and economies. In the 1300s, the Black Death pandemic of the bubonic plague broke the back of the feudal system in Europe, replacing it with the employment contract system.

Then there was the almost 100-year long war between France and England, which brought a period of severe recession. This ultimately brought about major agricultural innovation, boosting productivity. More recently, the SARS pandemic helped kickstart the growth of eCommerce giant Alibaba and online retail as a whole in Asia. The 2008 global financial crisis gave rise to fintech, which completely disrupted the world of financial products and services.

The Digital Shift

In 2020, Covid-19 has proven to be an accelerant for the digitization of almost all sectors. In fact, companies are 3 times more likely in 2020, compared to 2019, to say that 80% of their customer interactions are through digital channels.

The volume of assets being traded via online platforms has also witnessed a significant increase in 2020. Even online banking services received a boost, with reports indicating that the use of digital banking increased 35% during the pandemic. In fact, there has been a significant shift to digital platforms across the board. This acceleration is expected to end with the Covid-19 vaccine coming to the market. But that does not mean the preference for digital channels will cease. Investments in digital innovation are expected to generate their own momentum.

As a fintech focused firm offering trading via CFDs and digital options, Deriv embraced the shift to meet new customer demands. Already globally based, with multiple offices around the world, the changes needed came naturally and challenges were efficiently dealt with.

The Challenges of Digital Transformation

The move to a completely digital world brings its own challenges. The two key concerns with the migration to online platforms include the fear that human contact would be completely missing, while huge amounts of personal and sensitive data would be uploaded online, becoming vulnerable to hackers and other malicious elements.

The Need for Human Element

Limiting human contact during pandemics in nothing new. In the 15th century, King Henry VI of England banned kissing to contain the spread of the bubonic plague. In 2020, we’ve resorted to the elbow bump!

However, most people do not want businesses to operate in the manner they did before the pandemic. Around 70% of people in the UK strongly feel that we should not go back to “normal” until the virus is completely contained. The same sentiment is shared by people from other parts of the world as well. Almost 70% Canadians, 60% Americans and Australians, and around half the French and Brazilian population are against reopening of businesses until the virus is contained.

At the same time, people do crave for human interaction, which has been severely curtailed due to Covid-19. The human touch helps build trust between people. Plus, there are times you might need an actual person to listen to you and understand your needs. This is particularly true in 2020, since a large number of new traders have forayed into the financial markets and are using online trading platforms. They might need a higher level of handholding and support.

Digital Security

Security and handling of data and confidential information is one of the first things that comes to mind when dealing with anything digital. Clients want companies to ensure stringent data protection measures. Their fear seems well-founded too. Studies have shown that desktop and mobile apps of several trading platform providers do not use sufficient levels of encryption. Without proper encryption, HTML can be viewed as plain text. This can pose a serious security threat.

Also, there is a need for transparency regarding security measures. The need for more stringent digital security is more important in 2020 because of the higher number of traders using digital platforms for the first time. Their digital inexperience means they could have weak passwords and encryption, making them prone to cyberattacks.

How Deriv Trading is Stepping Up to the Challenge

At Deriv, we have a long history of focusing on just these challenges. While the level of shift to digital might be unprecedented in 2020, we already have the right infrastructure in place. Here’s a look.

Customer Support

With over 2 decades of experience, we take great pride in the excellence of our customer support services. A highly experienced support team is available 24 hours a day, even on the weekends. You can easily raise your issue through a customer service ticketing system or a live chat.

Additionally, we have a thriving online trading community. Here, traders can connect with peers, discuss strategies and market trends, and get their questions answered by more experienced traders. Social trading has proven to not only be extremely popular but also offer great support.

We also offer regular market news, webinars, analysis and video tutorials to help our clients stay informed, resolve their doubts and offer them the resources to make informed decisions.

Secure and Responsible Trading

At Deriv, data security and client safety are paramount. That is why we use best-in-class Secure Socket Layer (SSL) security measures to protect confidential client data. The SSL protocol utilizes a key pair to secure information. There is a private key and a public key. Together, these keys work to create an encrypted environment. This certificate also contains a “subject,” which is the identity of the website owner/business. This ensures that the data passing between a browser and a web server remains private. If any unauthorized entity intercepts this data, they would just see a scrambled mess of numbers and letters.

Additionally, Deriv is regulated and licensed across multiple jurisdictions. This ensures that we have the right systems and infrastructure, while following the best practices, to protect our clients’ interests. Some of our regulators we are licensed with include the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA), the Vanuatu Financial Services Commission (VFSC), the Labuan Financial Services Authority (Labuan FSA), and the British Virgin Islands Financial Services Commission. We are also registered with the Financial Commission, an independent international body that resolves disputes in the financial industry.

We also ensure segregation of client funds from Deriv’s own funds, across separate accounts at licensed and reputed financial institutions. This way, we cannot use client funds for any company purposes. With this, even in the unlikely case of Deriv becoming insolvent, client funds will be safely returned and not merged with our own funds.

Covid-19 has definitely accelerated the digital transformation for many industries, including fintech. However, this opportunity has also brought its own risks. Our role as a fintech service provider is to ensure that we minimize risk and maximize opportunities.

What measures do you take to minimize risk? Tweet us @Derivdotcom and share your experiences.

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