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August 14, 2023

This Week's News is Sponsored by Better Branches ~



General News


InRoads CU Leverages Eltropy Video Banking to Outsmart Fraudsters

Inroads Credit Union has successfully utilized video banking technology from Eltropy to combat fraud. The CU implemented the video banking tool to help enhance security and improve the member experience. They stated that they have thwarted fraud attempts with Video Banking, particularly for non-branch wire transactions. Since adopting the video platform, InRoads has achieved a fraud-free track record for such transactions.



Raiz FCU Intros Digital Banking Platform

Raiz Federal Credit Union has launched a new digital banking platform that offers a range of digital features, including online account opening, mobile check deposit, and person-to-person payments. Additionally, the platform provides improved security measures such as multi-factor authentication and real-time transaction monitoring to protect member accounts.



MSUFCU and Nymbus Partner

Nymbus announced that Michigan State University Federal Credit Union has partnered with them to deliver Nymbus SMB, a feature-rich, compliant, “bank in a box” solution designed to enable CUs to serve the rapidly growing Small and Medium Business (SMB) market. The platform features services like invoicing, cash management tools, cash flow analytics and a modern digital banking platform operating through a standalone technical infrastructure.





Hardware News


Ampere Launches 192-Core AmpereOne Server Processor

Ampere, a semiconductor company, has announced the launch of a new server processor called AmpereOne which contains 192 cores. They claim that the the AmpereOnes deliver two to three times the power savings over x86 with two to three times the cores. Among the features of these new cores is support for bfloat16, the popular instruction set used in AI training and inferencing.



Hardware Section Sponsored by
Millennial Vision, Inc. (MVi)


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Software Updates


Azure AI Adds GPT-4 and Upgraded Virtual Machines

Microsoft's Azure cloud platform with integrate with OpenAI's GPT-3 language model. This integration will enable developers to access the capabilities of GPT-3 through Azure's virtual machines, making it easier to build and deploy advanced AI applications. Azure OpenAI Service has about 11,000 customers who use it for tasks such as customer service, writing content and analyzing documents.



Can AI Really Change the Payments Industry?

The author states that the starting point of any payment has to be in making sure that the person paying or being paid is who they say they are, and passed through KYC and AML checks. He says that AI and ML tools don’t mind sifting through reams of paper or digitally scanned documentation, and with natural language processing, AI and ML can speed-read documents, verify whether they’re fake or genuine, and cross-reference them with other sources to ascertain authenticity. He also states that AI can facilitate straight-through processing of payments, with far more accurate decisioning, and smart routing and distribution of payment transactions to improve authorization and settlement. For example, AI can help a payment provider decide whether a specific transaction needs to go through two-factor authentication.



Why You Need Activity Logging in Microsoft 365 and How to Get It

Microsoft recently announced that it will be phasing in access to wider cloud security logs for worldwide customers at no additional cost. Microsoft will begin rolling out these logging enhancements starting in September but there are ways you can get access to these log files now and evaluate their information in the meantime. As Microsoft itself advises: "If you’re not an E5 customer at this time, use the 90-day Microsoft Purview solutions trial to explore how additional Purview capabilities can help your organization manage data security and compliance needs. Start now at the Microsoft Purview compliance portal trials hub."





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Why Card Skimming, Already Bad, Is Getting Worse

Card skimming remains a vexing problem in the United States, with the number of reported incidents increasing 20% during the first half of 2023 compared to the same period in 2022, according to FICO. FI ATMs are a more favored target for skimmers, with the number of incidents taking place at those machines increasing 109% year-over-year during the first half of 2023. Initially, skimmers were physical devices placed on ATMs or payment terminals to collect card data, but now criminals are resorting to more advanced techniques such as overlay skimmers and shimmers. Overlay skimmers are undetectable as they fit perfectly over the card reader, while shimmers are placed within the chip card slot. Additionally, scammers are using Bluetooth technology to remotely collect stolen data, making it easier and safer for them to avoid detection.



The Challenges with Implementing a Cashless Society

The potential benefits of a cashless society include convenience, cost-effectiveness, and increased financial inclusion. However, this article addresses several challenges that must be overcome for a successful cashless transition. Some of the challenges include: accessibility, security, privacy and the cost of setting up and maintaining a cashless infrastructure.



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Wireless World


FIs Look Beyond Mobile-Platform Adoption, Aim to Boost UX

This article suggests that improving the mobile banking user experience flow should be a higher priority than incorporating as many bells and whistles as possible. For example, simplifying the mobile experience for users is can be prioritized over the development of chatbots or automated conversations. Other trends include reducing the number of steps users must take to carry out mobile banking tasks, improving dropoff rates and pinpointing when inquiries need to be escalated to humans.



New U.S. Mobile Banking Market Share Report Published

William Mills Agency has created two new infographics depicting U.S. credit union and bank mobile banking market shares based on number of installations. They are available at: https://www.williammills.com/.



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Security Section


BioCatch Strengthens Collaboration with Microsoft Cloud for Financial Services

BioCatch, a behavioral biometrics company, has announced an enhanced collaboration with Microsoft Cloud for Financial Services. FIs can purchase BioCatch’s solutions through Azure Marketplace which can then can analyze up to billions of sessions per month for fraudlent activities for their users.



Solvo Unveils SecurityGenie

Solvo's new cloud security solution called SecurityGenie utilizes a chatbot-like interface powered by AI technology. The solution is designed to automate various security tasks, such as managing alerts, identifying vulnerabilities, and providing recommendations. Powered by OpenAI, SecurityGenie uses natural language processing (NLP), like how ChatGPT operates, but to help security teams to identify and remediate security risks, such as misconfigurations, vulnerabilities, and compliance violations.





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Technology and Marketing


Tiny Houses Are Helping Redwood Credit Union Address a Big Problem

In Northern California, Redwood Credit Union is partnering with Napa Sonoma ADU to offer financing and encourage the construction of accessory dwelling units (ADUs) to benefit those in need of housing as well as homeowners trying to make ends meet. Redwood’s ADU construction loan allows borrowers to take out loans at fixed and adjustable-rate terms with varying lengths. The credit union also offers flexibility in construction schedules and building options, promising to work within a borrower’s timeline for purchase, construction refinance, and construction-only loans.



The Secret to Retaining SMB Accounts

According to a new report from Apiture and Aite-Novarica, only 35% of small businesses believe their primary FI fully addresses their unique digital-banking needs. The report includes several recommendations for better serving SMBs: 1) Offer tailored solutions; 2) Provide an intuitive user experience; 3) Integrate with external vendors; 4) Include more money management tools; 5) and Partner more with FinTechs.



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Online Banking/E-Commerce/Website Design


Stripping the Magnetic Stripe: What's Taking so Long?

The world is moving on from magnetic stripe payment cards, with one notable exception: the United States. Credit card issuers, FIs and consumers agree the magnetic stripe is prone to hacking - so why is one of the largest markets for plastic payment still clinging to decades-old technology? One of the main barriers hindering the transition is the cost involved in implementing the necessary infrastructure changes. Updating payment terminals and backend systems can be expensive for many merchants, particularly small businesses. Additionally, some merchants choose not to upgrade because they believe the risk of fraud is low or think the investment is not worth it. Another challenge is the complexity of the payment ecosystem in the US. The article concludes that Mastercard looks to phase out payment cards with magnetic stripes by 2033, while Visa has "no specific plans to eliminate magnetic stripe."



Banking-as-a-Platform Market Revenue Set to Grow over 1,125% by 2028

A new study from Juniper Research has found global revenue from BaaP (Banking-as-a-Platform) services will increase to $49 billion globally in 2028, from $4 billion in 2023. The research firm says that compared with traditional acquisitions, BaaP partnerships are highly flexible and can be easier to integrate, as FIs transition to API-focused models. They conclude that by offering a wide range of services via BaaP, FIs can gain a competitive edge without having to stray from their core business.



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Internet Access


5 Best Practices for Optimizing Costs During Cloud Migration

The article discusses five best practices for optimizing costs during cloud migration. Firstly, it emphasizes the need for proper planning and evaluation before migrating to the cloud. Organizations should conduct a detailed analysis of their existing infrastructure and identify potential areas for cost optimization. Secondly, the article suggests setting up a cloud governance framework that includes policies, guidelines, and processes to manage expenses effectively. Thirdly, the article recommends using cloud cost optimization tools and services provided by cloud service providers. Furthermore, it advises taking advantage of cloud provider discounts and cost optimization programs. Lastly, the article emphasizes the importance of continuously optimizing costs even after the migration is complete. Constant evaluation of resource usage, periodic rightsizing of instances, and eliminating unused resources can contribute to long-term cost savings.



New Access Management Tool to Focus on the Least Privileges

Cloud-based identity and access security provider ConductorOne has launched a new privileged access management (CPAM) that will allow IT teams to grant just-in-time access to privileged resources. The agentless service can be used to manage access to cloud infrastructure accounts in AWS, GCP, Azure, Snowflake, etc. It utilizes artificial intelligence and automation to classify and manage user access permissions, continuously monitoring and adjusting privileges based on user behavior and job requirements. The tool also provides comprehensive auditing and reporting capabilities, enabling organizations to track and analyze access patterns and identify any anomalies or potential security risks.



Menlo Security Introduces Two Features to Protect Users Against Web Browser Threats

Menlo Security has unveiled a new solution called Heat Shield which uses a technology that operates through a web isolation method where it virtually isolates and renders web content in a cloud-based container before delivering it to the user's device. They say that their solution establishes a zero-standing privileges (ZSP) model to help prevent identity breaches by automating permissions management for cloud infrastructure and SaaS. It uses AI-based techniques – including computer vision combined with URL risk scoring and analysis of the web page elements – to help determine in real time if the link being accessed is a phishing site designed to steal the user’s credentials. In parallel, HEAT Visibility performs continual analysis of web traffic and applies AI/ML-powered classifiers that help identify the presence of highly evasive attacks.




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Call Centers


RingCentral Unveils RingCX

RingCentral announced the launch of RingCX which is a native, intelligent contact center platform. RingCX combines RingCentral’s unified communications (including message, video, phone, SMS, and fax) with contact center capabilities, plus generative AI capabilities. RingCX will have more than 1,000 features at launch and includes these 3 major features: 1) Native omnichannel; 2) AI-powered transcripts, summaries, and conversational insights; and 3) AI-first workforce engagement management.



Conversational AI to Fuel Contact Center Market to 16% Growth

Gartner predicts a 16% growth in conversational AI thanks to the booming contact center tech market, the advent of virtual assistants and as-a-service models. The article predicts that virtual assistants will offer product information, help with navigation and paying bills, and work within a human-in-the-loop context by directing queries to human agents. Gartner's report noted that while consumer service interactions involving AI are growing, most of these are augmented contact center engagements rather than a completely autonomous virtual agent. Overall, Gartner estimated that around 3% of interactions will be handled via CC AI in 2023, growing to 14% of interactions in 2027.