January 13, 2017

Tech Talk Editors George Milner and Teri Wesley have compiled a summary of this week's tech and cybersecurity news:

  • OCC on fintech and risks
  • SWIFT testing blockchain tech
  • A lesson in email security
  • Chatbot banking challenges
  • EMV and ATM fraud
  • Cardless ATM fraud
  • Mitigating ATM attacks
  • Card use & ATM withdrawals up
  • Testing real-time payments
  • Spam, Scams & Breaches
  • Updates, Patches and Alerts
  • and on the lighter side...
For more information, including a direct link to the source articles, visit the Tech Talk page on BankersOnline.com.

OCC on fintech and risks
On the heels of its December announcement regarding plans to provide charter options to fintech providers, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) highlighted the threat banks face from emerging fintech competitors in its semi-annual risk report. Increased operational risks due to changing cyber security threats and increased reliance on third party relationships were also highlighted in the report. Get the details at: Tech Talk.

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SWIFT tests blockchain tech
In an effort to help financial institutions reduce operational risks and lower costs, global payments network SWIFT is testing distributed ledger technology for database reconciliation in real-time. The proof of concept testing is part of SWIFT's global payments innovation initiative, and will begin in early 2017. Get the details at: Tech Talk.

A lesson in email security
Sending an email to the wrong recipient is an easy and all-too-common mistake – and one that can be costly for banks. Auto completion features found in many email programs and variations of domain names can result in a sensitive email falling into the wrong inbox. One bank's email faux pas sent 60,000 account details to an unknown recipient. Get the details at: Tech Talk.

Chatbot banking challenges
Banks are increasingly leveraging the power of artificial intelligence technology to deliver enhanced customer service with greater operational efficiency. Banking chatbots – a computer program that simulates a conversation via auditory or textual methods – can handle basic queries about payments, overdrafts and savings, freeing up bank staff to handle other more complex tasks. Providing the right balance of digital technology with a human touch is the challenge. Get the details at: Tech Talk.

EMV and ATM fraud
The ATM Industry Association (ATMIA) recently published their annual fraud survey results, reporting a decline, from 51% last year to 42% this year, in the number of participants who said ATM crimes was increasing. ATM crime includes skimming, PIN compromise, cash trapping, dispenser jackpotting, ATM malware, and a wide range of attack vectors. While the widespread adoption of EMV may reduce skimming attacks, fraudsters are resorting to physical attacks and devising new attack methods to pilfer card data at the ATM. Get the details at: Tech Talk.

Cardless ATM fraud
Banks have also deployed cardless technology to help mitigate fraud at the ATM. Cardless ATMs enable accountholders to withdraw money using just their mobile phones, without the need to carry or insert a card. But, as a recent case of cardless ATM fraud highlights, the technology that relies on a pin, phone and a password has its own inherent security flaws. Get the details at: Tech Talk.

Mitigating ATM attacks
A serious vulnerability discovered in security software used for Windows-based ATMs to detect and block malware that could have could allowed attackers to successfully penetrate banks has been patched by Intel Security. The incident, along with an increase in sophisticated ATM malware, highlights the need for banks and ATM operators to use security information and event management systems for real-time detection of targeted ATM attacks. Get the details at: Tech Talk.

Card use and ATM withdrawals up
Consumers are using less cash and writing fewer checks as the use of debit and credit cards and digital payments continue to rise, according to The Federal Reserve Payments Study 2016. Debit card use grew exponentially – more than any other payment method – to 69.5 billion in 2015 with a value of $2.56 trillion (an annual rate of 7.1%). The report also revealed a slight increase in the value of ATM cash withdrawals. Get the details at: Tech Talk.

Testing real-time payments
Last year, the payment network owned by the nation's largest banks, The Clearing House (TCH), announced it would be ready to roll out real-time payments in the first quarter of this year. As we've seen with the SWIFT network, connecting to multiple networks is not only complex, but can be risky. Fintech provider DH Corporation is offering banks a cloud-based environment to test connectivity to TCH's payments network. Get the details at: Tech Talk.


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On the Lighter Side....
Amazon's Echo and Echo Dot – voice-activated smart devices that use AI assistant Alexa to perform requested functions – were hot ticket items this holiday season. The device not only offers many useful features, it can also provide hours of personal entertainment.


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