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Operating at Your Best While Preparing for the Worst

Posted by Guest Author

Fri, Mar 27, 2020 @ 08:24 AM

To say that we live in uncertain times is a dramatic understatement. Political uncertainty, the threat of new tariffs, and the coronavirus pandemic have all contributed to a highly volatile outlook. This uncertainty is compounded in the transportation sector, where growth is closely tied to the output of the global economy. Coupled with long-term trends that have resulted in more competitive threats, price pressure, and increased service expectations, this volatility could hardly come at a more challenging time.

This should be a call to action for managers across the transportation sector to critically assess how their businesses could be affected by an economic slowdown. Fortunately, new technology solutions can create new ways to prepare. For example, by reducing costs and better managing risks, companies can ensure that factors and other transportation players are protected against the threat of a volatile economy.

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Topics: Commercial Lending

Trust: Our Promise to You

Posted by Kellie Eaton

Wed, Mar 25, 2020 @ 10:23 AM

Trust. A firm belief in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of someone or something. In business, trust is cultivated and built from the ground up – through perseverance and hard work. And when trust is achieved, the payoff is both emotionally fulfilling and financially rewarding.

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Topics: customer success

Personal Service in the Time of Social Distancing

Posted by Bryan McCarty

Fri, Mar 20, 2020 @ 09:15 AM

Community financial institutions are known for their personal service. Tellers know your name. You know theirs. Real relationships form. But what happens when a pandemic breaks out, schools shut down, and we’re all told to shelter at home?

Pandemics test the limits of customer service. As visits to the branch dip, the personal service that financial institutions offer inside the branch can no longer remain confined there.

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Topics: Community Banks, Financial Technology, Digital Banking

Heightened Cybersecurity Risk: What You Need to Know

Posted by Jennifer Roland-Vlach

Wed, Mar 18, 2020 @ 10:13 AM

On January 16 of this year, the FDIC and OCC issued the Joint Statement on Heightened Cybersecurity Risk. This Statement came amid increased geopolitical tensions between the U.S. and Iran and was an effort to bring awareness to the potential of a cyber attack and how financial institutions (FIs) should prepare themselves. The Statement does not provide any new information, but rather emphasizes standards previously outlined in the Interagency Guidelines Establishing Information Security Standards and FFIEC resources. The Statement reminds FIs that adhering to previously recommended principles and risk mitigation strategies will help to reduce the risk of a successful cyber attack.The Statement highlights areas in which FIs should focus attentions – response and resilience capabilities, authentication, and system configuration. Let’s explore each of these sections in a bit more detail. 

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Topics: Cybersecurity

Low Growth, Low Yields, Low Inflation...High Risk?

Posted by Jerry Boebel

Wed, Mar 11, 2020 @ 10:17 AM

Do you remember the actor Ben Stein? My generation knows him as the monotone teacher in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (“Bueller...Bueller...”). I’ll bet you didn’t know that his father, Herbert Stein, was actually the more famous member of the Stein family. Herbert was an economist of some repute to whom credit is given for Stein’s Law.  Stein’s Law states that if something cannot go on forever, it will stop. Consider Stein’s Law and how it impacts the current combination of low interest rates, low growth and low inflation.

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Topics: Credit Unions, Banking

Advocacy in Action: Celebrating the Credit Union Movement at the CUNA GAC

Posted by Tracy Almquist

Mon, Mar 09, 2020 @ 11:15 AM

Every year, thousands of eager, determined credit union professionals flock to the streets of Washington D.C. for the annual CUNA Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC). With more than 5,500 attendees, this year was no exception. Every credit union showed up with the same purpose: to celebrate each other and our movement – and to make our voices heard!

I have been fortunate enough to attend more than 10 GACs … but there was something particularly special about this year’s event. There was a spark that left me feeling inspired and proud to be a part of this community.

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Topics: Credit Unions, Modern Membership

Which Industries Will Be Asking Your Lenders for Working Capital Lines in 2020?

Posted by Patrick True

Fri, Mar 06, 2020 @ 08:30 AM

The most common loan request from businesses in the U.S. is a revolving line of credit. Federal Reserve Small Business Credit Surveys from the past five years prove this point. In the most recent of these, it was reported that more than 85% of credit requests are for short-term loans or lines, typically secured by business assets with a reliance on accounts receivable and/or inventory.

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Topics: Commercial Lending

Web Application Cybersecurity: Not Just for Audits Anymore

Posted by Robert Hudecek

Wed, Mar 04, 2020 @ 12:55 PM

With all the news play that security-related incidents receive, it may often feel like we are in a constant state of war against hackers.  This thought is not that far off, as receiving a personal breach notification now seems like a rite of passage into adulthood. Though mitigation through various password complexities, virus and malware protections, and multifactor authorizations are important, they can also lead to a false sense of cybersecurity.

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Topics: Cybersecurity

Top Spear Phishing Attacks & How to Reduce the Risk of Your Employees Taking the Bait

Posted by Karen Crumbley

Wed, Feb 26, 2020 @ 10:37 AM

This post was co-written by Karen Crumbley, Gladiator®, ProfitStars, and Keith Haskett, Rebyc Security. Karen has been providing Educational Risk Mitigation online training courses and encouraging community bankers to engage in conversations with their peer banks and vendors about how best to mitigate risks within their own institutions. She has also been a valued member of Jack Henry & Associates for thirteen years. Keith led the Risk and Information Security Consulting Services practice at CSI for several years, then co-founded Rebyc to deliver offensive security solutions customized to meet the needs of the highly-regulated, financial services industry.

Despite all of the strides made in the security industry to mitigate phishing scams, they continue to be one of the most successful forms of fraud. One of the primary reasons is due to the extensive efforts bad actors are making to research and observe their targets’ behavior. They monitor and research the users’ activity in order to craft sophisticated and convincing emails that even computer-savvy users struggle to identify, known as spear phishing attacks. Financial institutions (FIs) are faced with combatting phishing fraud through Information Security Awareness and Social Engineering Testing to keep employees up to date on the latest scams. The following list includes common types of spear phishing fraud targeting FI employees. You can share this information across your organization to boost ongoing education efforts.

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Topics: Cybersecurity, Risk/Fraud

The Partnership Series – Volume Four: Financial Institutions and Alternative Lenders

Posted by Paul McCulloch

Fri, Feb 21, 2020 @ 08:30 AM

Why should a financial institution (FI) care about the many alternative lending options their consumer and commercial customers have today? 

First, let’s define what alternative lending means. It’s a broad term that describes a wide range of loan options to consumers and business owners outside of a traditional bank or credit union loan. These alternative lenders are most commonly used when an individual or business owner cannot obtain a traditional loan from their FI for any number of reasons. Another reason is because of the delays and difficulty associated with applying for and being approved for traditional banking loans compared to the speed and ease of use being provided by many of the new alternative lenders today.

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Topics: Commercial Lending, Partnership

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