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January 30, 2023

This Week's News is Sponsored by Better Branches ~



General News


Union Credit Launches

Union Credit claims to be the first marketplace for CUs to deliver perpetual credit approval and one-click loan activation to new member prospects. The company plans to aggregate consumer data, and match it with credit union field of membership, product, decisioning and underwriting details.



MeridianLink Announces Marketing Automation Product Advancements

MeridianLink announced the expansion of its MeridianLink Engage platform, the marketing automation component of the company’s multi-product platform, MeridianLink One. They say that their new advancements to their marketing automation solution save time in the pre-screening and deposit account opening process and enable their customers to launch targeted marketing campaigns faster.



Happy Money Launches TruStage Payment Guard Insurance

Happy Money announced the launch of TruStage Payment Guard Insurance, underwritten by CUMIS Specialty Insurance Company. They claim that it is a first-of-its-kind solution for personal loans that provides borrower protection in the event of financial hardship due to involuntary unemployment or disability caused by illness or injury.





Hardware News


Lenovo's ThinkBook Wireless Dock Empowers Mobile Work

Lenovo has unveiled its ThinkBook Wireless Dock which is a combined biometric security solution and docking device that allows your laptop to wirelessly connect a pair of 4K monitors at 60Hz via dual HDMI ports. The wireless dock is powered by tech from Synaptics which is also being integrated into a Targus wireless docking station that will feature 100W PD, fingerprint ID scanning, and will work with other brands of laptops.



Dell Boosts Performance of PowerEdge Servers

Dell has announced the expansion of its PowerEdge Servers - the company has added 13 next-generation PowerEdge servers to its product stack. Dell claims its latest PowerEdge server offers up to 2.9x higher AI inferencing on 4th Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors, delivering improved performance. To further enhance server management, Dell will deploy three key sub-services: Dell CloudIQ, which handles machine learning, server monitoring and predictive analytics, Dell ProDeploy services for expansion of data centers, and Dell iDRAC9 for server automation and intelligence.



Roundup of Server Vendors Using New Xeon Processors

The fourth generation of Xeon Scalable processors, aka Sapphire Rapids, is hitting the ground running, with every major OEM offering new servers featuring the chips. Here's a partial list of vendors offering the new Xeons: 1) Dell; 2) HP Enterprise; 3) Lenovo; 4) Supermicro; 5) Inspur Information; and 6) Giga Computing.



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


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Software Updates


Nvidia Targets Insider Attacks with Digital Fingerprinting Technology

Nvidia announced that a digital lab playground for its latest security offering is now available, letting users try out an AI-powered system designed to monitor individual user accounts for potentially hazardous behavior. Nvidia said that the solution is essentially “a kind of LEGO kit” for digital fingerprinting, allowing users to customize their own solution that best meets their needs.



SpyCloud Compass Helps Identify Infected Devices Accessing Critical Workforce Apps

SpyCloud has launched Compass, a system that helps organizations detect and respond to the initial precursors to ransomware attacks. IT teams can use SpyCloud Compass to identify when devices, applications, and users are compromised by malware, even if the infected device or business application falls outside of corporate oversight. Incident responders can visualize the scope of each threat at-a-glance, seeing all details that can help remediate attacks.





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ATM Trends to Watch

The author is convinced that going into 2023, ATMs are at a crossroads both in terms of overall banking strategy and payments trends. He goes on to make these 4 predictions: 1) The cost of ATMs will continue to rise; 2) Strong growth in ATM field service organizations; 3) Global cash use will plunge further; and 4) Expect more ATM manufacturer woes.



How ATM Outsourcing Can Keep Low-Volume, Relationship-Driven Branch Locations Operating

The author is convinced that ATM outsourcing provides an opportunity for CUs to leverage self-service for relationship-driven locations without the costs or additional work. He points out that while keeping capital expenses for hardware off the books are a big benefit, most ATM outsourcing partners also cover compliance. Finally, he says that smaller staff numbers can be made more available due to ATM outsourcing to answer questions and provide in-depth member services for branch visitors – improving and building relationships better than ever.



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Wireless World


Mobile Banking Apps: Current Trends and What the Future Holds

It’s been over a decade and a half since the first mobile banking apps appeared — around the same time that Apple released its first smartphone with a touchscreen and full Internet access in 2007. All have mobile banking apps have certain features in common, such as depositing checks, locking and unlocking cards, making mobile payments, paying bills and transferring money. But this article states that this is not enough — apps also need to be smart and personalized for each user. It goes on to discuss what features and functonality are needed going foward.



As Mobile Wallets Gain in Popularity, Growing Number of Americans Still Prefer Convenience of Plastic

According to J.D. Power data, mobile wallet usage among Americans continues to grow in stores, but the percentage of consumers that still say it is easier to use a physical credit/debit card than a mobile wallet is on the rise. While other barriers to the widespread adoption of mobile wallets continue to erode (e.g., security concerns), consumers are increasingly satisfied with the simplicity of paying with plastic. Usability continues to be an issue holding back wide-spread adoption of mobile wallets. The percentage of consumers who said they do not use mobile wallets because it is less convenient than a card actually increased to 49% from 47% in 2022, according to J.D. Power. One potential reason for this rise? The emergence of contactless cards.



60% of People Now Prefer Banking on Mobile Apps

The majority of Americans no longer do their banking in person. A new GOBankingRates survey found that 59% of Americans prefer to bank via a mobile app, compared to 22% who prefer to bank online via a browser and 19% who prefer to bank at a branch or ATM. This preference is held across gender and across most age groups. The majority of Americans ages 18 to 54 prefer to bank on mobile, while the majority of those ages 55 to 64 prefer to bank in person and the majority of those ages 65 and older prefer to bank online.



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Security Section


Wallarm Touts API Leak Protection with New Scanning Feature

API security company Wallarm announced an active scanning system that checks through public sources of compromised API data, alerts users, and provides automated responses if a compromise is detected. The API Leak Protection feature, which will be deployed via Wallarm’s existing End-to-End API Security platform, takes advantage of that platform’s inventory of a given organization’s APIs. The system checks those APIs against compromised data found in known public sources of leaked API information — Pastebin, public repositories, and even dark web sources. It then revokes all access to requests made with compromised tokens, and blocks future requests from using them.



Biometric Payment Cards Launched by G+D, Demoed by STMicroelectronics

A new biometric payment card from Giesecke+Devrient has been launched under the brand name ‘Convego YOU.’ Activation is carried out with a sleeve or mobile phone app on Android or iOS. The biometric cards are produced through hot lamination, and their secure element is EMV and CC certified.



How Passkeys Are Changing Authentication

Passwords are a central aspect of security infrastructure and practice, but they are also a principal weakness involved in 81% of all hacking breaches. Passkeys are a kind of passwordless authentication that is seeing increasing focus and adoption. Although they are not foolproof (they can be synced to a device running an insecure OS, for example), they are far more secure than passwords. This article takes a deep dive into passkeys.





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Technology and Marketing


What Is Business Intelligence? Turning Data into Business Insights

Business intelligence (BI) is a set of strategies and technologies for analyzing business information and transforming it into actionable insights that inform strategic and tactical business decisions. The term business intelligence often also refers to a range of tools that provide quick, easy-to-digest access to insights about an organization’s current state, based on available data. This article compares business intelligence to business analytics and highlights a variety of business intelligence systems and tools.



Tearing down the Generational Divide in Your CU’s Social Media Marketing Strategy

The author believes that fixating on the segmentation of generations within your social media audiences can lead to undesirable results because a successful social media strategy appeals to all ages. She discusses a few commonalities to consider when creating marketing for your credit union’s social media platforms.



The Power of Data Democratization in Banking

One strategy that an increasing number of FIs are working towards is the democratization of data and access to insights. Data democratization provides access to data across a wider array of internal users, regardless of their role or level within the FI. This article concludes that for most FIs, the sharing of data and insights can help improve business operations, accountholder experience, marketing communication, and risk and fraud mitigation.



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Online Banking/E-Commerce/Website Design


Better Launches One Day Mortgage

Better has unveiled the capability for potential home buyers to be able to go online, get pre-approved, lock their rate and get a mortgage Commitment Letter from Better, all within 24 hours. They boast that Better’s offerings serve to kickstart the slow, opaque, and costly homeownership process. The firm says that they have already processed over $50 MM in One Day Mortgage commitments, with customers receiving a Commitment Letter in an average of 12 hours.



Four Ways You Might Sabotage Digital Onboarding (And How to Fix Them)

Banking had the highest level of abandonment among the 12 industries represented in a survey of IT executives. But this article states that the dropout rate can be reduced by tackling these four major pain points: 1) Not Enough of a Human Touch; 2) Proof of Identity; 3) All The Toggling Between Screens; and 4) Providing Supporting Documents.



We're One Step Closer to the Era of Open Banking

Even if the CFPB doesn't mandate data sharing, it will most likely establish standards and guidelines on how to do it. The CFPB plans to publish a report in the first quarter of 2023 following a public comment period. It will propose rules late next year, and some observers think that they will finalize a rule and begin implementing it sometime in 2024. This article states that everyone can benefit from open banking and lays out some valid reasons why this is true.



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Internet Access


Pros and Cons of Managed SASE

Managed SASE can be appealing for organizatons that want a single provider for deployment and management of WAN and security infrastructure, but there can be tradeoffs depending on provider flexibility, platform interoperability, and cost. SASE adoption is moving fast, with Gartner predicting 80% of enterprises will have adopted a SASE architecture by 2025 - but SASE implementation can be challenging. This article looks a both sides of managed SASE.



How Safe Are Your Cloud APIs?

API attacks are increasing in frequency as hackers look for new weaknesses in companies' security strategies. These kinds of attacks are favored because APIs serve as the connection points between different services. Securing cloud APIs requires a different kind of approach than locking down traditional APIs. In response, IT teams must rely on strict IAM permissions, apply least-privileged access controls in order to reduce the blast radius, apply anomaly detection to detect abuse of cloud identities, and constantly monitor cloud APIs audit logs.




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Call Centers


Intelligent Automation Can Help Contact Centers Weather Turbulent Times

According to ICT Enterprise Insights survey data, contact center platforms and technologies that are expected to hold the most potential for strategic (new) and minor investments in the coming 18 months include: augmented virtual reality, IVAs/chatbots, and guided agent assist, with more than 57% of organizations planning to increase their investments in these areas in 2023. However, technology investments won’t achieve proper ROI if employees don’t embrace them. Call centers must leverage a cross-section of employees and learn about their challenges, and then find champions who understand the goals of the initiative and can advocate for the needed decisions.