Common Definitive Financial Technology (FinTech) Jargon, Glossary and Terminology

Artificial Intelligence (AI): The broader concept of machines being able to carry out tasks in a way that we would consider “smart”.

Analytics: The tool used to measure patterns or trends in data.

APIs: Application Programming Interface. Software that allows two different sources to communicate with each other instantly. Messenger that takes your message and tells a system what it is you want to do and returns the response to you instantly.

AWS: Amazon Web Services. A division of Amazon that provides cloud-based infrastructure for businesses.

Benchmark: A point at which activity and performance are measured and compared.

FinTech Glossary, Jargon and Term
FinTech Glossary, Jargon and Term

Big Data: An enormous supply of data and often the analysis of such data. Voluminous amounts of structured or unstructured data that organizations can potentially mine and analyse for business gains. An immense supply of data and often the analysis of said data.

Bitcoin: A new form of independent currency that is held completely virtually. A virtual currency that can be exchanged digitally between individual users utilising cryptographic techniques to validate transactions and make changes to a distributed ledger.

Blockchain: A record of all public bitcoin transactions updated in real-time. A particular structure of DLT that links blocks of transactions, providing a complete history of all assets and instructions executed, using complex cryptography.

Bootstrap: An individual or group starting a new business venture with a minimal amount of seed investment or capital.

Business Incubator: A company that helps new and startup companies to develop by providing services such as management training or office space.

FinTech Glossary, Jargon and Term
FinTech Glossary, Jargon and Term

Cloud: A virtual infrastructure that holds an unlimited amount of data and information.

Cognitive Computing: Self-learning computer systems that attempt to mimic human thinking using data mining, pattern recognition and natural language processing. Simulation of human thought processes in a computerized model.

Crowdfunding: Projects that are funded by the public. The practice of funding a project or venture by raising many small amounts of money from a large number of people. This takes place most often via online platforms. But it can also happen through mail-order subscriptions, benefit events and other methods.

Cryptocurrency: Virtual currency that is thoroughly protected from hackers. A particular type of virtual currency that operates using cryptography.

Data: Information used to analyze or evaluate a possible outcome or trend.

Database: A program that allows you to organise your information in an efficient manner on one platform.

Digital Native: Young people who have grown up with the availability and use of digital technology. A catch-all category for children who have grown up using technology like the Internet, computers and mobile devices.

Digital Wallet: Refer to any electronic device or application that allows individuals to make electronic transactions.

Disruptive Innovation: The establishment of a new market, product or service that disturbs a pre-existing market or status quo.

Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT): A database that is replicated and shared across numerous computers. Allows individuals or institutions to securely verify and record changes to the shared database without the need for a trusted intermediary.

Encryption: The most effective way to achieve data security. To read an encrypted file you must have access to a secret key or password.

Finnovation: A buzzword referring to financial innovation.

FinTech: A buzzword referring to financial technology.

High-speed Networks: Networks that transfer data in milliseconds.

Hackathon: An event for developers that consists of uninterrupted coding with a view to solving a specific problem. Winners are usually determined by a panel, the public or their peers.

Hosting: A company that provides physical infrastructure for a website, application or software.

Incubator: When a firm mentors a business, usually a startup, through developmental stages.

Innovation: When technology leads to new ideas, products or services that improve upon the status quo. Can be viewed as the application of better ideas through more effective processes, services, technologies or business models. It is not limited to the application of new technologies.

Internet of Things (IoT): A proposed development of the Internet in which everyday objects have network connectivity, allowing them to send and receive data. A network of internet-connected everyday objects able to collect and exchange data using embedded sensors eg. car, being connected to your mobile device. Development of everyday internet-connected objects that have the ability to record, receive and send data.

Invoice Trading: Invoice trading is the process in which SMEs (sellers) auction their invoices online, as a way to gain quick access to money that would otherwise be tied up. They can sell them individually or in bundles to the bidders (buyers) who offer the most competitive price to advance them the money.

IT Management: Managing a firm’s information technology resources.

Machine Learning (ML): A current application of AI based around the idea that we give machines access to data and let them learn for themselves.

Market Data: Prices, values and reference information for financial instruments like stocks, bonds, currencies, futures and commodities.

Mini Bonds: Mini-bonds are a way for individuals to lend money directly to businesses. They are in effect IOUs which the companies sell to investors. Typically they have terms of three to five years and investors earn regular interest payments during the life of the mini-bond.

Mobile Technologies: Technology that you can access on your mobile device.

Online Banking: Having the ability to complete transactions, withdrawals or money transfers on your web or mobile device.

Online Investment Marketplace: In an online marketplace people view information on possible investments on an online platform. That information is sourced from or provided by a third party, usually a business or entrepreneur in need of finance. An investor can browse this information and invest, supporting the chosen venture or project, sometimes directly, sometimes indirectly.

Online Lending: Peer-to-peer money transfers online that don’t require a bank.

Payment Gateway: A service provider that facilitates credit card transactions for online businesses.

Robo-Advisor: Financial advisement provided by a computer-based system. Online wealth management service that provides automated algorithm-based portfolio management advice without the use of human financial planners.

SaaS: Software As A Service. On-demand delivery of software to a user (such as by subscription). Software licensing and delivery model in which software is licensed on a subscription basic and is centrally hosted.

Social Media: Online websites or mobile application that allow users to interact with one another through digital networking.

Startup: A newly established firm, usually under 50 employees, that has not yet achieved massive market share or growth.

Storage: The amount of memory and information a system can hold. With the cloud, storage is considered unlimited.

Virtual Currency: It operates like a currency but is not issued or backed by a central bank or public authority, nor has legal tender status in any jurisdiction.