11Onze App Test: biometric security

The launch of our banking application is approaching, and one of the recurring doubts is about what biometric data will guarantee the security of our operations. We speak with agent David López to clear up any doubts about the treatment of biometric data in 11Onze.

What biometric data will 11Onze App require?

There are several types of biometric data and, although the most common are fingerprint and facial recognition, systems based on gait, voice, or handwriting data have also appeared. 11Onze will focus on the first two, fingerprint and facial recognition, which will complement the personal password and PIN.

 

Why will biometric recognition be used?

Biometric recognition is part of the KYC (Know Your Customer) processes that have to be fulfilled in order to operate with a financial institution. In addition to attaching a photograph of the ID card, the system requires facial recognition to compare the two photographs, the ID card and the self-portrait, to ensure that the customer opening an account is indeed who he or she claims to be. Biometric data has a number of benefits, some of which are very basic, such as the fact that you do not need to remember a password or that the system automatically recognises you. Unlike a password, biometric recognition generates a verification of presence control, i.e. we know that a person is who s(he) says s(he) is, but we also know that they are there at that moment.

 

Where is the user data recorded?

The biometric data will never leave the device from which you access. You will use them to log in to our application, but they will always remain on your device. You can read this in the privacy policy. One of the key points for us is to guarantee the confidentiality of data processing, and that is why we use an industry-standard system to store and guarantee that the credentials are secure.

 

How will we use it in our daily operations?

In your daily operations, you will basically use fingerprint recognition or facial recognition, depending on the device you use or the permissions you want to accept. Above all, you will need it to enter the application. Once inside, for security reasons, you will be asked for your PIN from time to time to verify your identity. So you’ll need to remember that number at all times.

 

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The Plaça from 11Onze continues to improve the user experience. The notification system allows you to follow agents and not miss anything new.

 

The heart of La Plaça is the content and the dialogue that takes place with users. And, little by little, the way in which users interact will gradually shape what is shown to them. This is the objective, that La Plaça organically offers content that is appropriate for each user, so that the community becomes increasingly useful.

That’s why a notification system has been activated to let members know what’s new and interesting for them. It is the little red dot at the top right, where the user profile is located. Here you will be notified of anything that might be relevant, based on what you watch, like or follow, and you will also be notified when you earn more Peles!

Another key point of the system is that users can follow the agents they like the most. This is important because there will be more and more content creators in La Plaça and, therefore, this function will make it easier for them to find content.

If you still have any doubts about how it works, here are some screenshots.

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Telegram is much more than an instant messaging application, and it has tools that allow you to open groups and public communication channels for anyone who wants to follow them. We explain how it works and give you a brief tutorial on how to use the application.

 

What is Telegram?

It is an instant messaging application, free and open source, which can be used on multiple platforms synchronised through the Telegram cloud, and which allows voice calls, video calls, sending and receiving messages over the internet, as well as creating groups of up to 200,000 members and channels to broadcast to unlimited audiences.

 

Focused on security

Unlike other messaging applications, Telegram, since its inception, has focused on the security and privacy of its users. It offers the possibility of starting end-to-end encrypted “secret chats”, deleting messages with no time limit, biometric and PIN protection for our chats, incognito mode keyboard, and the alternative of entering a chat without the obligation of having an account linked to a phone number.

Telegram channels

One of the most powerful features that Telegram offers is the ability to create public or private Telegram channels. While messaging groups have a limited number of members, and everyone can participate in the conversation, channels are mainly unidirectional and with no limit to the number of members. There are two typologies:

  • Private channels: these are closed communities that can only be accessed by invitation from the channel owner and administrator, through a link.
  • Public channels: They all have a username and anyone can find them by doing a search on Telegram and join them.

These public channels facilitate the creation of user communities based on communication and content of common interest. A tailor-made complement to the 11Onze community established from La Plaça.

 

How to find and join a Telegram channel?

  • Once you have downloaded the application, and to find or check if there is a channel with the content you are interested in, simply enter what you are looking for in Telegram‘s integrated search engine, the icon with the magnifying glass, and you will see a list with all the results so that you can choose the most suitable one. You’ll know it’s a channel because the number of subscribers will appear below it.
  • Click on any of the search results, and you will enter the channel. At the bottom, there is a button with the option: “Add”. Just click on it, and you will be part of the channel.
  • To receive notifications every time you post on the channel, you have to go to Settings, in the wheel at the bottom right of the screen. Under “Sounds and notifications” make sure you have the “Channel notifications” option activated.

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11Onze continues the test phase of its app, and in this process, we ask ourselves which of the two mobile operating systems is more popular: Android or iOS? And which one works better?

 

In 2020, more than 90% of internet users in Spain accessed the web with their smartphones, according to a study by Statista. From 2015 to the present day, the market share of operating systems for mobile devices in Spain has been shared almost exclusively between these two “giants”: 87.1% for Android (Google) and 12.7% for iOS (Apple).

Therefore, since 2012, Android and iOS together account for 99% of the global market, with about 73% share for Android.

 

Talking about app downloads

In the first quarter of 2021, users made 28.2 billion app downloads from Google Play and only 8.4 million downloads from Apple’s App Store. Clearly, then, these figures do not maintain the market share ratios mentioned above (otherwise, we would be talking about 20,6 billion and 7,6 billion downloads, respectively) and there are several reasons why this might be the case.

The Google Play platform has always accounted for the lion’s share of app downloads, but Apple’s App Store is stronger in terms of revenue generation.

In the first quarter of 2021, Google Play had 3.48 million apps available, and Apple’s App Store had 2.22 million. This is 61% for Google Play, and 39% for the Apple App Store in how many apps are available is much closer to the global market share ratios of Android and iOS respectively.

 

Android vs. iOS

iOS systems are more efficient and secure than Android installations; their software is designed specifically for Apple devices, while Android apps are designed to fit a wide variety of manufacturers and models of all types.

Because Apple is always up-to-date with its hardware and devices, updates are released on the same date for everyone; all of its devices are updated on the same day without any discrimination. In contrast, Android is known for its questionable update timing, because different manufacturers schedule updates according to their priorities, and not together with Google, which causes a massive delay.

Android offers a plethora of options to customise the look and feel of our smartphone, while iPhones opt for simplicity in their user interface, and this lack of multiple options helps users to be less confused and in turn, helps to create an easy user experience.

Android has many other advantages, simply because of its open-source nature. iOS, on the other hand, is a closed source operating system, meaning that only the manufacturer, Apple, has control over everything related to iOS. This means that once you purchase an Apple device, you enter into a relationship with the brand that will necessarily be with you for the life of the device. Therefore, the versatility and improvement of its operating systems are what is making Android increasingly popular.

 

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With the start of the 11Onze app tests, which will open the doors to the bank’s first financial services, we take the opportunity to review the progress of mobile banking in recent years.

 

Last week, 11Onze began testing its application, which will offer state-of-the-art banking services in our country. The first users who have the privilege of testing it have been chosen from among the active members of La Plaça and you can still apply to participate by sending an email to [email protected]

11Onze will offer its financial services in line with the growing demand for mobile banking applications by customers, which are increasingly used to the detriment of traditional, face-to-face operations. The evolution of mobile banking confirms that applications are increasingly becoming the preferred option.

 

New technology with a global reach

Today, 35% of banking customers worldwide use mobile applications to conduct their daily banking business. Countries as diverse as Poland, South Africa, New Zealand, South Korea, Sweden, and Thailand have more than 50% of mobile banking users, which speaks to the global reach of mobile banking. Major markets such as the United States already have 57 million customers using it.

Mobile banking has been around longer than we remember, starting to develop in the United Kingdom. In Spain, it did so in 1983, although the first telephone systems did not arrive until a decade later, in 1995. Today, it is used by 44% of Spanish customers on a regular basis, ranking 21st in the world.

 

User satisfaction endorses mobile banking

Until now, banks had made a commitment to provide a combined service in several channels, but there is an increase in customer satisfaction when they have good digital banking services. In this sense, they increasingly value having a good mobile application: agile, intuitive, and secure. This usefulness, appreciated by the user of the mobile application, is reflected in how it remains a stable tool on our device, keeping it 6% longer than any other application in any other sector.

Mobile banking applications have received a logical boost from the younger generations, who are more familiar with new technologies and less wary of using them. The so-called millennials are ahead of any other age group in making the switch from online banking to mobile banking, due to the convenience it represents for them. This young profile is increasing the number of customers with accounts in fintech companies by almost 20% a month.

 

More operations at a lower cost

The ease of working with 24-hour availability, lower fees and costs, no physical paper documentation, and simplified procedures are the attractions that customers value most when choosing mobile banking. The most frequent uses are also simple: payments, transaction enquiries, and transfers.

However, innovation goes hand in hand with the evolution of these apps. From systems to guarantee the user’s security, to tools that facilitate savings or provide balance sheets and advice on earnings and expenses for a given period, as well as comprehensive management of subscriptions. Customer demands are expanding to include all possible services within the applications, such as, for example, the request and formalisation of credit. A demand acknowledged by the entities which, in turn, are increasingly opening up the range of functionalities.

 

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As consumers, we are used to new technologies allowing us to buy and sell with a simple click. But we are perhaps less aware of the service that digital tools provide in markets that have been around for thousands of years, as is the case of the grape marketplace.

 

This summer, the Catalan Wine Cluster, INNOVI, presented the MORAMercat Online de Raïm project. The cluster has promoted this digital marketplace with the idea of putting winegrowers and winemakers in contact with each other when buying or selling grapes.

INNOVI has promoted MORA as an online tool that puts winegrowers and winemakers in contact with each other so that they can plan the harvest in the best possible way. The platform is available for mobile phones and PCs.

 

Grapes without intermediaries

As well as helping to improve grape harvest planning, MORA aims to give visibility to small wineries that find it difficult to find out about the varieties, volumes and characteristics of the vines that are of interest to them for making their product, and it also aims to be a tool to help grape producers who are looking for a buyer. In short, the aim of the tool is to enable a direct connection between supply and demand, to be a meeting point, to be the marketplace where business is done. Once the seller and the buyer come into contact, the purchase and sale transaction is made directly between the two parties, without intermediation. Technology, therefore, will be able to bring buyer and seller together in a direct way, improving profit margins for winegrowers.

A similar project exists in Italy. In 2017, the entrepreneur Francesco Mazzone created the UVA Online platform where he acts as an intermediary between winegrowers, both table grape and wine grape growers.

Innovi offers tutorials on how to use MORA.

 

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11Onze is still in the testing phase of its application, which will include the option of having a virtual card. What are they like? What are they used for? Here’s a brief look at the history of virtual cards.

 

Sixty years ago the first payment card was introduced and, since that day, the way we shop has changed to adapt to the era of e-commerce, bringing about a radical change in the way we pay. The way we consume is constantly changing, specially with the increase in e-commerce, following the start of the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020, as can be seen in the study carried out by Kantar, which states that 3 out of every 4 Spanish households have made purchases online in 2020, and that these households will continue to shop online in 2021. Households that now shop online account for 74.4%, which has increased e-commerce consumers by 8.4% since 2017. As detailed by Kantar in its study, the remaining 26.6% of consumers are older people who commute to buy products themselves, as they prefer a personalised service. And just as the consumption model has changed, so has the payment model. Welcome to the era of virtual cards.

  • 74% of households in our country make purchases over the Internet.

What are virtual cards? Virtual cards are more secure cards, and unlike conventional payment cards, they are completely virtual. They are exclusively used for virtual purchases, but with the possibility to be used in physical establishments if you have the card linked to a wallet on your smartphone. The virtual card has a number, an expiry date, and a control number, as Rankia details. The financial website also states that the security controls of virtual cards are very varied. Some banks have a dynamic code that changes with each purchase, while others allow very few purchases to be made, and if there is money left on the card, this money is automatically returned to the account from which the card was recharged. Each customer is free to make a new virtual card whenever they need it, it’s as simple as that.

  • Virtual cards do not have a physical format and are not directly linked to our financial products, which makes them more secure.

How was the virtual card born? Since the world’s first payment card from Diners Club in 1950, the world of payment cards has come a long way, from the arrival of credit cards in Spain in the 1960s to virtual cards, according to Finanzas. A website specialising in finance reminds us that virtual cards were born with the arrival of mobile telephony, with the payment systems known as “wallets”.

How are they regulated? The European regulation PSD2, the new European regulation on electronic payment services, came into force in September 2018, with the aim of reinforcing security for consumers with e-commerce payment systems. With this regulation, which has been in force for three years now, it can be said that something is changing in the way we make payments. In short, we can say that virtual cards are here to stay as another means of payment.

 

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There are now more mobile devices in the world than people. Mobile phones have changed the way we live, work, communicate and even our quality of life, wellbeing and health.

 

An app is a standalone piece of software that is made to perform a specific task and is optimised for use on smartphones, tablets or smartwatches based on the features available. Health apps are known as mobile Health (mHealth), and according to the World Health Organization (WHO) it is a “delivery of health information and services using mobile technologies”.

 

What is a health application?

It falls within the field of eHealth, understood as the use of communication and information technologies applied to health services (computers, mobile phones, GPS, connected medical instrument monitors, medical robots, etc.). These are computer programmes that are used on mobile platforms and are often connected to medical devices that tell us how to improve our health or prevent risks. There are also diagnostic applications, for treating patients or communicating with our healthcare system.

The European Commission states that medical and public health practice is compatible with mobile phones, patient monitoring devices, personal digital assistants and other wireless devices. It also includes in this category applications related to health information to the population, medication reminders sent by SMS, telemedicine, training and guidance systems and even lifestyle and wellness applications created with the aim of maintaining or improving the population’s healthy habits through the practice of sport and wellness.

 

How are they monitored and what quality criteria is used?

In Catalonia, a method for evaluating mobile health applications using objective variables, called iSYScore, has been used for some time now.

The criteria used by iSYScore to select the most suitable mobile health apps is based on the opinions of users, developers and health professionals, and is based on three key factors: popularity, trust and usefulness.

 

What are the problems with these applications?

Basically, the lack of loyalty. There are few apps that have achieved long-term stability. A study confirms that 70% of chronically ill people who have used them stop using them after six months. And 80% of apps are abandoned after only two weeks. To improve these figures, personalisation based on different profiles would be advisable. Each person is unique, and these apps act in a generic way.

Another problem to be faced is that of data ownership and data protection, as well as the loss of credibility the product may have if it doesn’t work for the first users who try it.

 

Tips for choosing a reliable application

  1. Be informed: Search and compare applications on search engines such as Google. 
  2. Reviews: Search forums for user opinions. 
  3. List of options: Choose between 4 or 5 applications.
  4. Reliability:  Make sure they are based on scientific evidence, and a good place to do this is to look for references in PubMed (National Center for Biotechnology Information).
  5. Test: It would be advisable to test (try out) the application with a friend. If, for example, you suffer from insomnia, it is important that your friend does not suffer from insomnia so that you can share how it went.
  6. Who is behind it? To be a quality (reliable) application, it is important that technicians, health professionals (who will be different depending on the purpose of the product) and experts in legislation and data management have been involved in the process. 
  7. Obsolescence: Clinical studies require time and in the world of new technologies time passes very quickly and therefore needs to be taken into account.

Following these simple steps will ensure that the applications you use are quite reliable.

 

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We compile a list of the main apps for selling or buying all kinds of second-hand products. The sustainable trend of buying second-hand products is here to stay.

 

The world is constantly evolving, at the same time as people’s way of consuming is also changing. This is the origin of the Recommerce trend: the sale of second-hand goods, based on the circular economy: Reduce, reuse and recycle. This means that by reducing the consumption of new products, people save money while minimising their environmental impact. This predisposition to buy second-hand products has become widespread among people concerned about sustainability, and their responsibility when it comes to consuming goes beyond looking for the cheapest product. Today we would like to invite you to discover the world of recommerce, with different apps where you can find all kinds of second-hand products, from bicycles, clothes and cars to technological products. Welcome to the new era of a sustainable economy:

  • Backmarket: This app is making a lot of noise online. With this app you can buy professionally reconditioned technology products at discounts of up to 70% off their original price. Smartphones, computer devices, televisions, cameras, drones, small household appliances. The application also acts as a guarantee, as well as a connector between sellers and customers.
  • Letgo: Application to sell everything you no longer need, or to buy what you want, in a very simple and convenient way. The difference between this app and the others for buying and selling second-hand items is that this app has image recognition and artificial intelligence to be able to tag and catalogue the items for sale. In this app you can sell and buy books, cars, sports equipment, fashion, household items…
  • Wallapop: This is undoubtedly the app par excellence for buying and selling second-hand products, with more than 15 million users. It is also similar to Letgo, where you can buy all kinds of products. A meeting point between sellers and buyers, where, through a conversation, the sale and purchase of the product is formalised.
  • Coches: In this app you can buy and sell second-hand cars, pre-registered new cars, and even new cars. More than half of the vehicles on sale offer a guarantee, and you can find motorhomes, vans or even cars for which you don’t need a driving license. In short, the leading motoring app.
  • Vinted: A community for selling second-hand clothes, through videos or images uploaded by sellers to offer their clothes. A sustainable and fun way, both to make some room in our wardrobe and also to renew it.
  • Milanuncios: Classified as one of the most veteran, this application never goes out of fashion. With a simple design, since its creation in 2005 it has always managed to stay at the forefront of classified ads. Here you can find everything from jobs, clothes, and furniture, to renting and selling flats…
  • Bkie: With cycling so fashionable, you couldn’t miss an app for buying and selling bikes and cycling products. A buying and selling application like any other, but with the particularity that it is focused on the cycling community.

We hope you liked the concept of recommerce, followed by the apps we have suggested. And don’t hesitate to put into practice the three R’s of the circular economy: Reduce, Reuse and Recycle, also in your purchases.

 

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The pharmaceutical laboratory Reig Jofre, one of the 10 most influential families in the health sector, continues to bet on Catalonia.

 

Catalonia has a long history of pharmaceutical research and health. Companies such as Grífols, Almirall, Esteve, and Uriach join the list of companies in the most important family sagas in the country.

In the case of Reig Jofre, Ramon Reig Jofre created the company as a family pharmacy in 1929. Ninety years and three generations later, the company is listed on Ibex 35 and sales have reached 62 million euros in the first quarter of 2021.

 

From neighbourhood pharmacy to reference multinational company

This success story begins in a pharmacy in the Gràcia district of Barcelona, founded by Ramon Reig Jofre. Four decades later, his son-in-law, Joan M. Biosca, takes the reins and begins its expansion. A few years later, in 2006, it will be his son Ignasi Biosca who will take on the third generation that is still in force.

Since then, its evolution has been constant and with a clear international orientation. At first, they created the production plant in Sant Joan Despí (1998), followed by that of Toledo (2000), and the business activity control centre in the United Kingdom (2014). Thanks to the acquisition of the Swedish company Bioglan AB, they also have a plant in Sweden (2009). In 2015, it merged with the reference pharmacy supplement company, Natraceutical, and strengthened its position in the Spanish pharmaceutical market, also improving its listing on the Spanish stock market. Between 2016 and 2017, its products start being sold in the Asian market.

 

The internationalization of laboratories

In 2019, they bought the division of Bioibérica, a company that already had a portfolio of products for osteoarthritis and similar diseases, for 46 million euros. A purchase accepted by investors and with a double strategic purpose: increase benefits and gain market positioning, and get an injection of money to enlarge the Sant Joan Despí plant. Two goals that did not take long to be achieved.

Today the company has little more than 1,000 workers, a net profit of 5.7 million, according to 2020 figures, and presence in more than 70 countries, in 8 of which they have direct sales. Production in Spain equals 45% of total production, which is why CEO Ignasi Biosca stressed, during the pandemic, the importance of preserving pharmaceutical and health companies within the country. The rest of the production is concentrated in Europe (42%) and the rest of the world (13%).

 

The pandemic, an unexpected ally

Covid-19 arrived when the factory was being completed. Janssen needed factories to produce the hundreds of millions of doses of his vaccine Ad26.COV2-S and Roig Jofre was chosen, above all, for two reasons. On the one hand, for the leading technology of the company, which ensures that no worker has contact with the raw material at any point in the process. And, on the other hand, the fact that the plant has not yet been used ensures an availability of 80% in the production of vaccines. 

The deal with Janssen increased its stock price by 25%, and everything points to the Catalan company being key in the cure of Covid-19. However, for now, the process of manufacturing the new vaccines has been delayed due to incidents in the production of the United States and the Netherlands.

The Sant Joan Despí factory will operate 24 hours a day to produce up to 250 million doses of the vaccine annually.

 

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