The UNIPaaS Ultimate Glossary ofEmbedded Finance Terms

Whether you're a newcomer to the embeddedfinance scene or an experienced player, keeping pace with the ever-evolvingjargon and acronyms can be a real challenge. That's why we've put together ourglossary – a convenient resource that unravels the most in-demand and currentterms that are indispensable in the world of embedded finance.

Application Programming Interface (API): Allows for applications to communicate with one another.

Anti-Money Laundering (AML): Policies, regulations and laws designed to mitigate financial crimes.

Agent: An entity or individual acting on behalf of a Money Services Business registered with FinCEN.

API Economy: Economic activity empowered by APIs.

Account Aggregation (AA): The collection of financial data from multiple sources to create a single source of truth.

Banking as a Service (BaaS): A model by which digital banks and third parties connect with bank systems via APIs to build banking ecosystems.

Breakage: This is revenue that has been generated from services that are paid for, but not used. An example of this is gift cards that are not redeemed.

Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL): A type of payment method that allows for consumers to purchase items and then pay for them at another time.

Business to Business (B2B): Transactions and interactions and services designed by a business for another business. B2B payments are often made using electronic funds transfer.

Card-Linked Offers (CFOs): Consumers are targeted by marketing campaigns based on recent credit and debit card activity using CLOs that promote specific businesses or services.

Chargebacks: These are transactions that are reversed after purchase. They are initiated by customers or financial institutions and are most commonly associated with credit card purchases.

Closed-Loop Card (CLC): These cards can only be used to make purchases on products or services provided by the issuing brand.

Compliance: The process of following rigorous regulations and rules that are specific to the financial services industry to ensure security, minimise fraud and reduce money laundering.

Consumer Finance: Providing financial products and services designed for the consumer market and for consumer requirements.

Data Analytics: Data analytics extracts, cleans and analyses data to provide the organisation with insights that promote decision-making and improvements across service and product offerings.

Direct Debit: Direct debits are funds taken directly from a customer’s bank account to pay for a specific service or product. These are usually scheduled to take place automatically at a set time every month.

Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT): The secure and transparent recording and management of transactions across multiple systems and computers. It is ideally suited to tracking and securing financial transactions.

Due Diligence: Gathering information, compliance data and insights about a business or opportunity to ensure all risks and opportunities are correctly identified prior to financial commitments.

Embedded Finance: The integration of financial services into an organisation’s products and services. Embedded finance solutions are seamlessly integrated through APIs to provide smart and accessible financial services to customers.

Embedded Payments: Payment processing functionalities embedded within non-financial company products and services allowing for non-financial companies to deliver payment services to their customers.

Europay, MasterCard and Visa Chip (EMV Chip): These are embedded in credit and debit cards and are considered more secure than magnetic stripes.

Encryption: Data is locked into a form that cannot be read without a special key that unlocks (decrypts) it. This protects data from unauthorised access.

Equity Crowdfunding: A type of crowdfunding that allows for investors to purchase shares in a company and is a smart way to raise capital.

Financial Technology (FinTech): Technology designed specifically for use within and by the financial services sector.

Financial Inclusion: Ensuring that all members of society have fair and equitable access to financial products and services.

Fraud: Criminal activities perpetrated within the financial system with the goal of illicit financial gain.

Gift Cards: Cards that are prepaid and have money loaded onto them and that can be used to purchase items. These do not have any clear financial institution affiliation.

Instant Payouts: The ability to pay an individual or business in real-time using technologies designed to make the process as smooth and speedy as possible.

Interchange Fee: This is the money paid by a merchant bank (the acquirer) to the cardholder’s bank (issuer) to process a transaction made on a debit or credit card.

Invoice Payments: These are payments made by a customer to a service provider to settle the amount on an invoice.

Just In Time Funding (JIT Funding): Automatically funding an account in real time as the transaction is taking place.

Know Your Business (KYB): The process by which an organisation’s stakeholders are verified during the registration of a new financial services account.  This process is undertaken regularly while the account is active.

Know Your Customer (KYC): The process by which a customer’s identity and documentation are verified when they open a new financial services account and is undertaken regularly while the account is active.

Ledger: A digital record or paper-based record used to track, manage and maintain transactions for a business or entity.

Loyalty Programme: A marketing and branding initiative used to increase customer stickiness and reduce churn by rewarding customers with items or points that have a financial value.

Money Services Business (MSB): A non-bank financial institution which handles financial elements such as currency deals, cheques, traveller’s cheques and more.

Monetisation: The process by which revenue is generated through products, services, platforms and marketplaces that include payment mechanisms and engage with customers in multiple ways.

Onboarding: The process by which an individual or entity is brought into a business. Onboarding usually includes compliance, KYB, KYC and AML checks.

Open Banking: These standards are designed to allow financial institutions the ability to share customer data with third-party service providers and makes it easier for customers and non-financial companies to engage in payment and financial activities, securely.

Payment Card Industry Compliance (PCI Compliance): A set of standards and regulations issued by the PCI Security Standards Council to ensure financial transactions are as secure as possible.

Payments Links: These are URLs or links that have been created by individuals or entities to facilitate smooth financial transactions.

Prepaid Debit Card: A card that has a stored value and is issued by a financial institution. Consumers can use these cards to make payments, pay bills and more.

Regulatory Technology (RegTech): This is technology designed to help organisations comply with regulations.

Risk Assessment: This is the route that companies take to assess risks that they face and to put processes in place to mitigate these risks.

Software as a Service (SaaS): This is the process by which software services are sold by third-party companies as a service to organisations and individuals. It is a model of software delivery that is hosted and managed by this third-party.

Security: This defines how a business or entity protects its data, systems and transactions from cybercriminals and fraudulent activity. It prevents unauthorised access to systems and businesses.

Service Organisation Control (SOC): These are compliance standards designed to help companies remain protected if they store and process financial data or customer data.Treasury Services: Funds management, capital allocation, reporting, savings – all these financial transactions and more are known as treasury services.

Trust Services Criteria: These criteria are used to determine the security and privacy of systems.

Virtual Card: A card that performs the same actions as a plastic, physical card, but is entirely virtual.

White-label: Branding a product or service provided by a third-party with your own corporate branding but with their technology and capabilities driving the back-end.

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