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Connexus : Issue 36
Many mutuals are keen to introduce mobile banking in 2011 despite the technical complications, security issues and a few false starts in recent years. Although it is yet to become mainstream in Australia, it has a strong following in markets including the United States, United Kingdom and South Korea. Mobile banking has great potential for helping to retain customers by providing another customer service contact point, and it's particularly appealing for regional and remote banking institutions. In last year's Abacus survey of mutual sector CEOs, it was the third most popular initiative on their agendas for 2011. Forty- eight per cent of respondents ticked that box, exceeded only by improving online banking (70.4 per cent) and the use of social media (52 per cent). A diverse range of technological solutions is available. Local banking institutions' internet banking platforms can be accessed via a mobile browser and there are purpose-built applications for smartphones. Due to the variety of smartphones, such as iPhone, Blackberry and Android, multiple downloadable applications may be required. To be successful, banking institutions need to consider several major issues before jumping on the mobile banking bandwagon. TARGETING EARLY ADOPTERS According to Datamonitor's 2010 financial ser vices survey, only about 30 per cent of consumers feel comfortable using mobile banking, and the percentage is lower for transactional tasks such as bank transfers and bill payments. This indicates that, rather than taking a generalist approach, you need to carefully define and target your initial customers. The early adopters of iPhones and iPads may be a good place to start. However, to reach a wider distribution of customers, financial service providers must ensure they develop inclusive platforms not solely targeted at Apple devices. Some banks are developing both multiple and different applications for Blackberry, Android and Apple devices. SECURITY Mobile banking security is a major concern for customers. Fifty-nine per cent of respondents to a KPMG survey pointed out security issues. A recent trojan horse attack on smartphone bank account information and a security flaw in Citibank's iPhone app were widely reported in the media. Clearly, banking institutions must develop security strategies to protect their mobile customers. Shared Services Merchant Acquiring - EFTPOS A stable, reliable and technologically advanced Merchant Acquiring service provided exclusively through Shared Services by the Commonwealth Bank. Shared Services Pty Ltd • PO Box 2215 Bowral NSW 2576 • T: (02) 4860 4004 F: (02) 4861 6222 • www.sharedservices.com.au • Competitive pricing • 24/7 Merchant support • Credit Union Branded EFTPOS Terminals • Contactless Payment acceptance option -- "Tap and Go" • Direct settlement into Credit Union accounts • "No compete" undertaking • Electronic reporting and commissions • Capacity to add own margin. Contact Ross Stone, General Manager Mobile: 0407 481 611