Visa Announces $100 Million Fund for Generative AI in Commerce and Payments

On October 2, 2023, Visa Inc., a global leader in payment solutions, announced a $100 million fund dedicated to generative artificial intelligence (AI). The fund is designed to invest in startups and established businesses that are at the forefront of developing generative AI technologies and applications, particularly those that have potential applications in commerce and payments.

Visa Ventures, the corporate investment division of Visa, will be responsible for overseeing the fund’s investment activities. Established in 2007, Visa Ventures has a history of backing innovative projects in the payment and commerce sectors. David Rolf, Head of Visa Ventures, expressed enthusiasm about the initiative, stating, “Generative AI has the potential to be one of the most transformative technologies of our time. We are excited to expand our focus to invest in some of the most innovative and disruptive venture-backed startups in the fields of generative AI, commerce, and payments.”

The Capabilities of Generative AI

Generative AI is a type of artificial intelligence that can produce a wide array of content, from text and images to audio and synthetic data. The technology has already shown its capabilities through major AI chatbots like OpenAI’s ChatGPT and Google’s Bard, which can generate text that closely resembles human writing. This opens up new avenues for how AI can be utilized in various sectors, including commerce and payments.

Visa’s Long-standing Commitment to AI

Visa has been a pioneer in the adoption of artificial intelligence technologies. As early as 1993, the company implemented AI-based systems for risk and fraud management. In 2022, Visa Advanced Authorization, the company’s real-time fraud monitoring system, was credited with preventing approximately $27 billion in fraudulent activities. Last year, Visa also launched VisaNet +AI, a suite of AI-based services aimed at helping financial institutions tackle challenges related to daily settlement operations.

Beyond its investments in AI, Visa has also been exploring other technological frontiers. The company has shown a positive stance on the incorporation of blockchain technology, particularly Bitcoin, into payment systems. Jack Forestell, Chief Product and Strategy Officer at Visa, believes that generative AI holds significant promise in reshaping the financial landscape.

The $100 million fund is a significant step in Visa’s broader strategy to stay ahead in the rapidly evolving technological landscape. It not only reinforces the company’s leadership in AI but also signals its intent to be at the forefront of future innovations that could redefine commerce and payments.

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Report: Visa Blocks $30 Billion in Fraud, Highlighting Crypto and NFT

Visa Inc. (NYSE:V), a global pioneer in digital payments, unveiled its Fall 2023 Biannual Threats Report, spotlighting the escalating sophistication of fraud schemes in the retail and eCommerce sectors.

Key Takeaways

Phishing Schemes Amplified by AI: The report underscores a notable surge in phishing schemes, now amplified by generative AI tools. This evolution marks a new chapter in the cyber threat landscape.

Ransomware Attacks on the Rise: March 2023 set a new record with approximately 460 ransomware attacks, marking a 91% spike from February 2023 and a 62% increase year-over-year. Notably, these attacks aren’t solely targeting payment data but are compromising any accessible data, including personal identifiable information.

Enumeration Attacks Surge by 40%: The first half of 2023 witnessed a 40% uptick in enumeration attacks. Visa’s real-time Account Attack Intelligence played a pivotal role in identifying and mitigating these threats.

Online Merchants Bear the Brunt: Online merchants accounted for 58% of total fraud and breach investigations, with physical retailers at 20%, and ransomware/fraud schemes at 7%.

Retail-Specific Schemes Gain Traction: The past six months saw a measurable increase in retail-specific fraud schemes. These include counterfeit merchant sites, malvertising, flash-fraud scams, and the emerging “free gift” crypto scam.

Paul Fabara, Chief Risk Officer at Visa, commented, “The $30 billion of fraud prevented in the last six months is a testament to Visa’s proactive approach, even as fraudsters become increasingly sophisticated.”

Global Collaborative Efforts

Visa’s collaboration with global law enforcement has led to significant crackdowns on cybercrime. Noteworthy actions include:

Try2Check Platform Takedown: In May 2023, the US Secret Service dismantled the cybercrime platform Try2Check. Its administrator, Denis Gennadievich Kulkov, now faces a potential 20-year prison sentence.

Operation Urban Justice: This California-based operation targeted Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) fraud, resulting in the arrest of 20 suspects linked to an Eastern European crime syndicate.

Genesis Market Takedown: April 2023 saw an international coalition arrest 119 individuals associated with the cybercrime platform.

Visa’s multifaceted approach, from its Risk Operations Center to its Payment Threat Intelligence team, showcases its commitment to safeguarding the global economy.

Visa has recently unveiled its enhanced stablecoin settlement capabilities. As reported by Blockchain.News, this expansion includes the integration of the Solana blockchain. Furthermore, Visa has embarked on pilot projects in collaboration with merchant acquirers Worldpay and Nuvei.

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Breaking: Visa Expands Stablecoin Settlement On Solana

Visa Inc. (NYSE: V), a global payments giant, has announced the expansion of its stablecoin settlement capabilities, according to Blockchain.News, incorporating the Solana blockchain and initiating pilot programs with merchant acquirers Worldpay and Nuvei.

A Leap in Cross-Border Settlements

Visa’s latest move aims to modernize cross-border money movement by leveraging stablecoins like Circle’s USDC. The company has already conducted live pilots, transferring millions of USDC between its partners over both the Solana and Ethereum blockchain networks to settle fiat-denominated payments authorized via VisaNet.

By leveraging stablecoins like USDC and global blockchain networks like Solana and Ethereum, we’re helping to improve the speed of cross-border settlement and providing a modern option for our clients to easily send or receive funds from Visa’s treasury,

said Cuy Sheffield, Head of Crypto at Visa.

Building on Previous Success

In 2021, Visa initiated a pilot program with, making it one of the first major payment networks to test stablecoin settlement on the issuance side. The pilot was successful in leveraging USDC and the Ethereum blockchain to receive payments from for cross-border volume on their live card program in Australia.

Before the pilot, Visa cardholders faced a days-long currency conversion process and costly international wire transfers for cross-border purchases. Now, can send USDC directly to a Visa treasury managed Circle account, reducing both time and complexity.

Expanding to Merchant Acquirers

While Visa’s treasury operation continues to test receiving funds on-chain from multiple issuer partners, the new settlement options enable Visa to send funds on-chain to acquirers like Worldpay and Nuvei. These acquirers serve a diverse range of sectors, including blockchain and crypto economy merchants such as on-ramp providers, games, and NFT marketplaces.

Stablecoins like USDC are cutting-edge payments technology that can enable online businesses around the world to accelerate their growth,

said Philip Fayer, Chair and CEO of Nuvei.

Solana’s High-Performance Capabilities

Visa’s decision to add support for Solana was driven by the blockchain’s high performance, seeing 400 millisecond block times and averaging 400 transactions per second (TPS), with surges to more than 2,000 TPS during peak demand. This makes Visa one of the first major payments companies to directly utilize Solana for live settlement payments between its clients.

Future Outlook

Visa’s work with Worldpay and Nuvei represents a significant stride in embracing the innovative potential of digital currencies. With an eye towards an increasingly digital financial landscape, Visa is forging ahead with new partnerships, aiming to be at the forefront of digital currency and blockchain innovation.

Stablecoins Gain Traction in Traditional Finance

The move by Visa comes amid increasing signs that traditional financial institutions are embracing stablecoins. On August 7, 2023, PayPal (NASDAQ: PYPL) announced the launch of its U.S. dollar-denominated stablecoin, PayPal USD (PYUSD), as reported by Blockchain.News, aimed at transforming payments in web3 and digitally native environments.

Furthermore, Tether, the issuer of the largest stablecoin USDT, now ranks 22nd in U.S. Treasury Holdings, surpassing countries like Mexico, Australia, and Spain. Tether Holdings Limited released its Q2 2023 assurance opinion, revealing that its excess reserves have increased by approximately $850 million, reaching a total of $3.3 billion. The company’s operational profits for April to June 2023 exceeded $1 billion, marking a 30% increase quarter over quarter.

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Visa New Crypto Initiative

Visa, a leading global payment corporation, has announced its latest initiative focused on stablecoin payments. This move is part of the company’s ongoing exploration of the potential benefits of the cryptocurrency industry. Visa’s latest cryptocurrency-related endeavor was unveiled by Cuy Sheffield, the company’s head of crypto, via Twitter on April 24th. Visa made the announcement. A new cryptocurrency product has been developed to promote the extensive use of public blockchain networks and stablecoin transactions.

Visa is on the hunt for software engineers with specialized skills in programming, backend systems, and Web3 technologies. The goal is to create innovative products that simplify digital commerce in our daily lives. The organization is seeking potential employees with prior experience in writing and debugging smart contracts using Github Copilot and other AI-assisted engineering tools. In the latest job posting, the preferred qualifications for the position include a comprehensive understanding of layer 1 and layer 2 solutions, proficiency in writing smart contracts using Solidity programming language, and familiarity with both public and permissioned distributed ledger networks, security protocols, private key custody, and Ethereum enhancements like ERC-4337.

Visa’s venture into the cryptocurrency market in 2020 has led to the development of a new cryptocurrency product. In a recent development, the business has partnered with the blockchain startup Circle to facilitate the integration of the stablecoin USD Coin (USDC) on a specific set of credit cards. In the face of a challenging market for cryptocurrencies in 2022, Visa has reportedly postponed a number of new industry partnerships. Despite the company’s efforts to expand its crypto offerings, setbacks such as the struggles of Celsius and FTX have contributed to a more cautious approach.

Visa has announced a new crypto project, signaling the company’s increasing involvement in the cryptocurrency and blockchain industry. The move also highlights Visa’s desire to promote the widespread adoption of stablecoin payments. Visa’s goal to encourage widespread use of stablecoin payments is a testament to the growing interest and demand for this type of currency. In a recent development, Visa has launched a new cryptocurrency product that is expected to have a significant impact on the growth and progress of the industry. As more companies and individuals begin to recognize the benefits of cryptocurrencies, this latest offering from Visa is poised to play a crucial role in their adoption.


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Visa Reports Record-Breaking Cryptocurrency Thefts in 2022

Visa, one of the world’s leading payment providers, has released its biannual threat report, revealing that 2022 saw a record-breaking number of cryptocurrency thefts, with over $3 billion stolen in on-chain exploits. The report covers all types of digital payment system violations worldwide, including plastic card fraud schemes and malware, but has a separate section dedicated to cryptocurrency and digital platforms.

The report identifies token bridges as a common target for threat actors. These bridges enable the exchange of cryptocurrencies between different blockchain networks, but fraudsters often exploit smart contracts within the bridge service to either create new transactions or allow for unauthorized transactions to be approved. Between January and early October 2022, a total of $2 billion was stolen via token bridges.

Visa’s report also highlights a cryptocurrency-focused phishing campaign that targeted crypto exchanges. The attackers impersonated a crypto exchange in emails to collect the victim’s account login data. When the actual exchange prompted the threat actor for two-factor authentication (2FA), the attacker used the spoofed site to obtain the victim’s 2FA information, allowing them to complete the login process using the genuine 2FA from the spoofed site.

In February, it was reported that Visa and Mastercard would delay the launch of new partnerships with crypto firms due to high-profile bankruptcies in the industry. However, Cuy Sheffield, Visa’s head of product, refuted the claims, stating that Visa would continue to partner with crypto companies to enhance fiat on and off-ramps and create new products to facilitate stablecoin payments.

Despite the delay, the cryptocurrency market has continued to grow, with Bitcoin’s market capitalization surpassing Visa’s for the third time in history on February 20. By March 14, the gap between the two had grown to over $20 billion in favor of Bitcoin.

Cryptocurrency thefts have been a recurring problem in the industry, with exchanges and users often targeted by hackers. In 2019, the infamous hack of Japan-based exchange Coincheck resulted in the loss of over $500 million worth of cryptocurrency. Similarly, the 2021 Colonial Pipeline ransomware attack involved a demand for payment in Bitcoin.

Visa’s report highlights the importance of securing token bridges and exchanges, as well as the need for continued efforts to enhance security measures in the cryptocurrency industry.


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Bitcoin Flips Visa Again

Since the beginning of the year, the price of Bitcoin (BTC) has increased by 48%, which has caused its market valuation to once again surpass that of the payment processing behemoth Visa.

According to CoinMarketCap, with the price of Bitcoin sitting at $24,365 at the moment, its market size of $470.16 billion is now only slightly more than that of Visa, which has a market cap of $469.87 billion at the moment.

Companies Market Cap reports that this is the third time Bitcoin has “flipped” Visa’s market cap, meaning that Bitcoin’s value has exceeded Visa’s value.

The first occasion was in late December 2020, coincidentally coinciding with the first time that BTC reached $25,000 in value.

This was accomplished during a price rise that saw BTC climb from $10,200 in September 2020 to $63,170 seven months later in April 2021. The price increase lasted for seven months.

BTC was able to take the lead over Visa for a very short period of time on October 1 before the payments business was able to reclaim their position as the market leader. Visa regained the lead between June and October 2022.

This advantage was further extended when, between November 6 and 10, 2022, the failure of the cryptocurrency exchange FTX took off more than $100 billion from the value of BTC in only four days.

However, since that time, BTC has had a complete recovery and has added an extra $65 billion to its market valuation of $408 billion as of November 6. This has allowed it to surpass the payment processing behemoth.

Because of the relatively tiny gap in their respective market caps, Bitcoin and Visa are now trading places on an hourly basis, which is something that should be taken into consideration.

Regarding the remarkable beginning that Bitcoin had in 2023, its third “flipping” of Visa occurred on the heels of a run of 14 days in a row during which the price increased. This run lasted from January 4 through January 17.

According to Google Finance, the market capitalization of Mastercard, the world’s second-largest payment processing network, is now $345.24 billion. BTC, on the other hand, has a significant lead over Mastercard.

However, Bitcoin is still trading at a discount of 63% compared to its all-time high of $69,044 that it hit on November 10th, 2021.


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Visa Launches a Special NFT Auction Ahead of FIFA World Cup in Qatar

Financial services giant and the official payment partner of FIFA at the upcoming World Cup in Qatar has announced the launch of Visa Masters of Movement Non-Fungible Token (NFT) pre-event auction.


According to the firm, the NFT is inspired by unique goals from 5 football legends including Jared Borgetti, Tim Cahill, Carli Lloyd, Michael Owen, and Maxi Rodriguez.

The movements from these football stars were turned into an NFT by award-winning XK Studio and as revealed, the bidding for the NFTs has been opened on, the official crypto exchange partner of the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

Visa said collectors who throw in the winning bid for the Masters of the Movement NFTs will receive the artwork in their wallets alongside a high-quality printable file. The NFTs will be signed by the footballers featured, adding to their authenticity.

“As FIFA World Cup 2022™ approaches, we want to celebrate football, art, and technology through the lens of what makes the FIFA World Cup™ so special – wildly impassioned fans, legendary athletes, and for a few short weeks, the ability to bring the world together in a uniquely connected way,” said Andrea Fairchild, senior vice president and head of sponsorships, Visa.

FIFA has made a lot o partnerships ahead of the World Cup scheduled to hold in Qatar. While the event remains one of the most anticipated sporting tournaments this decade, the brands partnering with FIFA are notably pushing forth the avenues to register the historic moments on the blockchain.

Besides its partnership with Visa and, FIFA also has an active partnership with Algorand, a Proof-of-Stake (PoS) blockchain protocol. 

The pre-event NFT auction is just a sequel to the FIFA Fan Festival that will take place live in Doha. Per its design, fans will be able to create their own Masters of the Movement moves, some of which will get to be minted as NFTs to commemorate the history that is bound to be made.

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Visa Files Trademark Applications for Crypto Products, Including NFTs

Payment giant Visa has filed two trademark applications to the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) concerning cryptocurrency wallets, non-fungible tokens (NFT), and the Metaverse.


This was initially revealed when Mike Kondoudis, a USPTO-licensed trademark attorney, tweeted about it on Thursday.

Filed on October 22, 2022, the application applies for trademarks related to managing digital, virtual, and cryptocurrency transactions, including digital currency and cryptocurrency wallets.

The application also applied to providing temporary use of non-downloadable software for users to view, access, store, monitor, manage, trade, send, receive, transmit, and exchange digital currency, virtual currency, cryptocurrency, digital and blockchain assets, and NFTs.

Other sections of the applications relate to non-downloadable virtual goods as well as a collectible series of non-fungible tokens and also providing virtual environments where users can interact with each other for recreational, relaxation, or entertainment purposes available and accessible in the virtual world.

As a result of the rapid growth of the web3 industry as a whole, filing trademark crypto product applications is now a thing most companies have been actively doing these past years. As reported by Blockchain.News last month, the Web3.0 and Metaverse trademark-related applications for this year have already surpassed the total recorded in 2021.

According to data uploaded by Mike Kondoudis, roughly 4,200 US trademark applications were filed for metaverse, virtual, and web3 goods and services within the first 8 months of this year. In addition, the NFT-specific trademarks have outpaced that of last year, with crypto-hinged trademarks also hitting massive figures.

Furthermore, Juniper Research has reported that NFT transactions are expected to rise from 24 million in 2022 to $40 million by 2027 as the metaverse trend continues to gain steam. The report stated, this projection is based on its medium scenario for adoption, with brands leveraging the metaverse to boost digital growth.

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Per the announcement:

“Initially available to US residents, users can spend their crypto or cash within their Wallet without fees and earn 1% back in crypto anywhere Visa debit cards are accepted.” Visa Card seeks to make crypto usage easier, given that it leverages Marqeta’s latest card issuing platform and Visa’s payments network. 

Peter Smith, the co-founder and CEO of, pointed out:

“As one of the crypto industry’s oldest and most trusted platforms, we’re excited to roll out the natural next step to make crypto easy to use in the real world and accessible to as many people as possible.” 

He added that the Visa Card would play an instrumental role in shaping the future of mainstream finance. 

Based on Marqeta’s notable Just-in-Time Funding feature, users will have the chance to seamlessly transact in fiat from their available crypto balances. 

This will be made possible because each Visa card will be linked to an approved Wallet account.

Simon Khalaf, Marqeta’s chief product officer, stated:

“ has built up a massive user base, and we’re proud that our platform can make it possible for their customers to spend against their cryptocurrency wallet at the point of sale, using the magic of Just-in-Time funding.” 

With Marqeta’s 2022 State of Money Movement survey disclosing that 38% of US consumers are crypto owners, it highlighted the surging need for crypto usage in daily scenarios.

Cuy Sheffield, the head of crypto at Visa, noted:

“At Visa, we believe for crypto adoption to grow, it’s critical for it to be easily accepted everywhere. We’re excited to partner with leading crypto wallets and exchanges like to unlock more ways consumers can use their crypto for everyday purchases.”

Meanwhile, Mastercard recently inked a deal with BitOasis to establish a series of crypto card programs aimed at boosting daily cryptocurrency usage in the Middle East & North Africa (MENA) region, Blockchain.News reported. 

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Binance to Bolster Crypto Utility With New Cashback Feature

Binance Exchange, the world’s largest digital currency trading platform by volume has unveiled its new crypto cashback program for all Binance Card holders.


Taking to its official Twitter account, Binance said users can spend any of their digital currencies with the Visa card and get an 8% Cashback.


Creating new functionalities for the benefit of users has been considered the way to go in the digital currency ecosystem. With more exchanges coming into the scene, existing ones have had to create new products and services to retain users and capture more.


From its description, the new service offered through the Binance Card Cashback program will give its users the opportunity to transact in more than 60 million merchant locations around the world. The exchange said users will be able to use its card and get the cashback while incurring a $0 annual fee and a $0 foreign transaction fee.


While the Binance Card offering still has its limitations, depending on the country of residence of the user and the applicable laws, users can generally gain access to the broader Binance ecosystem and explore the investment options available.


Binance has remained a standard exchange with creative business models designed to benefit its users. In competition with the likes of Coinbase Global Inc and, both of whom also offer payment cards to their users, Binance has always made targeted efforts to take its business a step further.


The crypto winter has also given Binance a relatively competitive advantage in the broader scheme of things. While many exchanges including Coinbase and Gemini sent off a significant percentage of their staff packing, Binance revealed its plan to hire 2,000 new hands before the end of the year.

Binance exchange has also advanced its business through a series of new licenses tapped in Italy, Spain, and other regions in the past year.

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Bitcoin (BTC) $ 38,118.21 2.95%
Ethereum (ETH) $ 2,061.72 2.33%
Litecoin (LTC) $ 69.96 1.70%
Bitcoin Cash (BCH) $ 223.79 0.91%