The technology underlying our banking systems is decaying. It is expensive to run, unreliable, insecure and so out dated that bank customers never get anything like the quality and richness of service they deserve. Thought Machine is changing all this. With a world class team expert in cloud computing, machine learning, finance, design and app building, we are creating the banks of the future.
Vault OS creates banks that run in the Cloud. It provides secure, fast, reliable end to end banking systems, capable of managing users, accounts, savings, loans, mortgages and more sophisticated financial products. Our customers are banks who want a modern banking engine. Everything runs as Software as a Service, so a bank can scale from one customer to tens of millions without having to incur any hard costs. Vault OS is completely flexible, smart contracts are used to create products, so any type of loan or deposit account is configurable.
The Vault OS kernel runs the core functions of the bank. It uses a centralised, permissioned cryptographic ledger as a single source of truth for all transactions. This ensures the highest degree of security, while allowing the bank to retain ownership and control. All banking products (deposit accounts, savings, mortgages, loans, credit card accounts) use a system of smart contracts.
The first stage in learning about a customer's behaviour is to categorise their transactions. Our machine learning algorithms do fine grained analysis, categorising transactions into 60 separate types.
Paper contracts suffer from all sorts of problems. People often don't really understand what they are reading, signatures can be forged and contracts lost. Smart Contracts solve these problems and more. They are written in code and signed digitally by the parties. Most importantly, a Smart Contract can do things, specifically make payments. A smart employment contract not only tells you how much you will get paid, but once active, will calculate your tax and pay you every month, without you or your employer having to lift a finger.
SkyScraper allows applications to safely and securely connect to an existing bank account. Once connected, it can read transactions and make payments. The transactions can be passed to other Thought Machine systems, for example, for analysis of spending and saving patterns. SkyScraper displays the transactions in an easy to read way, and provides logos for most companies, shops and organisations.
This underlies the day to day functions of staff in the bank. And similarly to Vault OS Gateway, enables bank facing apps and websites to be developed quickly and safely. It has a system of roles and permissions defining who can do what. Workflows and tickets can be used to automate, assign and track tasks.
Vault Gateway brings many parts of Vault OS together to offer a single unified API to all large high street banks. It allows application developers to write apps for personal finance without having to take part in complex integration projects with each bank. It can securely store banking credentials if needed.
Security lies at the heart of Vault OS. The ledger has blockchain style digital signatures meaning we can be sure who performed which action. We use encryption and cryptographic hash functions to record and audit transactions and activity. All stored data and communication between systems is encrypted making Vault OS one of the most secure financial systems ever built.
Design is a core discipline at Thought Machine. Even though we are an engineering heavy team, the effective combination of art and technology is strived for in every customer facing action we take. Our creatives come from top agency backgrounds and collaborate with the research team and engineers to create punchy new Vault OS experiences for banking.
Many of our back end engineers cut their teeth at Google, which is where we learned to build highly scalable robust cloud computing systems. This setup is ideal for banking where we can perform millions of transactions quickly and securely. We have a system of continuous deployment so every week updates are pushed into production without the need for downtime. The system is robust to failure - even taking down an entire data centre will largely be unnoticed by users.
We build our own apps and partner with other app developers to build apps which work on Vault OS. We mainly develop our apps to show off the capabilities of Vault OS, but want a system of open APIs so each bank can own and develop the user experience it wants for its users.
Our machine learning team builds systems that analyse banking behaviour to better guide people with their financial lives. We have strength in depth here: our CEO has worked in machine learning and the rest of this team have PhDs in the subject with many working at top investment banks and hedge funds.
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