CU 2.0 Podcast Episode 84 Kevin Langford on Remote Workers and Cyber Insecurities in the Age of Coronavirus

Suddenly credit unions across the nation are ordering employees home, as part of the response to the coronavirus pandemic.  And that is triggering a tidal wave of worries about the possible cyber insecurities that will result as newly empowered employees log into the credit union networks.

Hitherto, at many credit unions, the workers who had home access to the network were mainly senior, experienced, and both well trained and well equipped.

Today’s newly drafted home workers often lack the right equipment and their training may have been brisk.

Global cyber criminals are said to be eyeing these workers the way a hungry lioness eyes a slow wildebeest in the Serengeti.

 That’s why you want to hear from Kevin Langford, chief information officer at $140 million Georgetown Kraft Credit Union in South Carolina.

Langford has trained many workers in the secrets of safe cyber work at home and here he tells what every credit union needs to be doing.

This topic is so big that next week we will post another podcast on the same theme with Shane Butcher, senior solutions and security architect at CUSO Ongoing Operations. 

You need to listen to both.  The risks are extraordinary today and here are solid suggestions for navigating turbulence securely.

The UPS scam info is here.

The dropped USB drive info is here.

Listen to this podcast here.  

Like what you are hearing? Find out how you can help sponsor this podcast here. Very affordable sponsorship packages are available. Email rjmcgarvey@gmail.com

Find out more about CU2.0 and the digital transformation of credit unions here. It’s a journey every credit union needs to take. Pronto

CU 2.0 Podcast Episode 83 Ron Shevlin, Again, on How to Win in Financial Services

Who will win: community banks or credit unions?

War on.

A keen observer is Ron Shevlin, diretor of research at Cornerstone Advisors and author of a new report, What’s Going on in Banking 2020.  It’s a data rich report. Download it, read it.

Shevlin was an early guest on the CU2.0 Podcast – Episode 21 – and he’s back in this wide ranging conversation about credit unions, technology, and ways to win.

For instance: can community banks regain a hold on retail banking, a niche they ceded to credit unions some years ago?

Can credit unions succeed at taking business banking from community banks?

A growing trend, per Shevlin, is that consumers have multiple checking account relationships that they seek to optimize – and a key is how easy it is to quickly move money around today.  What does your institution know about this?

A credit union failing is a persistent belief that “our success is our people,” said Shevlin.

Millennials are more focused on technology.

“It is not about people, it’s about meeting members’ needs,” said Shevlin.

He also gives a formula for succeeding in financial services today. It comes near the end of the podcast. Listen up.

There’s a reference to Bill Bynum, CEO of Hope Credit Union. Hear his podcast here.

Listen to the Shevlin 2 podcast here.

Like what you are hearing? Find out how you can help sponsor this podcast here. Very affordable sponsorship packages are available. Email rjmcgarvey@gmail.com

Find out more about CU2.0 and the digital transformation of credit unions here. It’s a journey every credit union needs to take. Pronto

CU 2.0 Podcast Episode 82 Jon Ogden MX on the Future of Banking

Does your credit union have a future?

There’s the blunt question.

Welcome to the CU2.0 Podcast with your host Robert McGarvey. Today’s guest Jon Ogden, head of strategic content at digital firm MX which has recently released two provocative reports, The Ultimate Guide to the Future of Banking and the Ultimate Guide to Digital Transformation.

Read them, they are free.

But know they may keep you up at night.

That’s because many, many institutions – thousands of credit union among them – just don’t get it. They cling to an analog, physical world where consumers – most of them and more daily – crave better digital experiences.

The MX reports – filled with consumer research – prove this.  Today 86% of us say our primary contacts with our FI are mobile and online. Just 14% say it’s via branch or ATM.

59% of us say we would take a loan from a tech company.

49% of us predict “far fewer branches.”

This is a fast ride through lots of numbers but the bracing take away from the numbers is that now is the time to transform – or perish.

In this podcast Ogden talks about work MX has done for credit union giant BECU.  Hear our podcast with retired CEO Gary Oakland.

Know that some of the opinions in the reports come from banking futurist Chris Skinner.  Hear our podcast with Skinner.

Listen here

Like what you are hearing? Find out how you can help sponsor this podcast here. Very affordable sponsorship packages are available. Email rjmcgarvey@gmail.com

Find out more about CU2.0 and the digital transformation of credit unions here. It’s a journey every credit union needs to take. Pronto

Merger Madness: Are credit union – bank mergers just plain wrong?

by Robert McGarvey

When a credit union buys a bank, has something terribly wrong happened?  Listen to bankers and you will think the answer is a loud yes.

Even some credit union veterans agree.

But it is the bankers who right now are creating the loudest noises.

Are they right? Why are these mergers occuring at all?

First off, some perspective. In 2019 there were exactly 16 credit union-bank mergers.  There were 271 bank-bank mergers.

And yet here is the Independent Community Bankers Association shouting that the Devil is at the door, or words to that frightened effect: “ICBA and the nation’s community banks are calling on Washington to stop pressing the snooze button and wake up to the risks of aggressive, growth-obsessed credit unions and the costs of their taxpayer-funded subsidies,” ICBA President and CEO Rebeca Romero Rainey said. “With credit unions abandoning their founding mission in the name of expansion and risky lending, it is long past time for Congress to level the playing field between community banks and credit unions while reining in the National Credit Union Administration’s expand-at-all-costs agenda.”

The ICBA also announced a Wake Up campaign to warn the public about the perceived dangers of the tax exempt status of credit unions.

And yet, in a conversation with Keith Leggett, longtime senior economist of the American Bankers Association, now retired but who still writes his Credit Union Watch column, Leggett told me that when a community bank does a deal with a credit union it is because the bank is out to get the best deal for its shareholders and when that is a credit union, so be it.

Continued at CUInsight

CU 2.0 Podcast Episode 81 Keith Leggett and Bank-Credit Union Mergers and Dancing with the Devil

by Robert McGarvey

When a credit union buys a community bank is that dancing with the devil?

Welcome to the CU2.0 podcast with your host Robert McGarvey. Today’s guest Keith Leggett, now retired Chief Economist with the American Bankers Association who still actively writes his blog, Credit Union Watch.

The topic of the talk: bank – credit union mergers.

Some banking experts are up in arms about these mergers.  Not Leggett.  He says community banks that are up for sale generally are looking for the best valuation and credit unions, in some cases, are exactly that as they seek to add new business capabilities – especially in business lending – and a fast route to that capability is buying the right community bank and retaining key staff.

On that note. listen to the CU 2.0 podcast with retired SECU CEO Jim Blaine, whose ideas are referenced by Leggett. We also discuss Maine Harvest, a new charter, and Leggett points to research on credit union bank mergers via Filene, also the St. Louis Fed.

Numbers to remember. In the past two years there have been around 400 bank – bank mergers. There have been around 20 bank – credit union deals.

Meantime, Leggett tempers his positive perspective on bank – credit union deals by saying there needs to be a two way street, that is, the regulator needs to lighten up about credit unions selling out to banks.

Why do bankers so often loudly scream about bank mergers with credit unions? A lot has to do with association politics, says Leggett, who adds that there’s always a stronger response when a wolf is said to be at the door.

Listen here

Like what you are hearing? Find out how you can help sponsor this podcast here. Very affordable sponsorship packages are available. Email rjmcgarvey@gmail.com

Find out more about CU2.0 and the digital transformation of credit unions here. It’s a journey every credit union needs to take. Pronto

Talking at cross purposes: Where credit union cybersecurity goes awry

by Robert McGarvey

For years I have pondered a puzzle: why do financial institutions spend so much on cybersecurity and employ wonderfully smart and talented people – but the results are not as good as one would hope.

Frequently financial institutions simply are whipped by their criminal opponents.

Just look back on how DDOS – distributed denial of service – brought innumerable institutions to their knees a few years ago.  It took months for credit unions to get it together to repel the attack.

Then look at ATM jackpotting. New account opening fraud. ATM skimming. The list could go on and on but you get the message: criminals often outwit credit unions and banks and that is despite the money spent and the talent employed.

Why don’t credit unions gain the upperhand?

Hear the related podcast with Authentic8 CEO Scott Petry here.

A new report, sponsored by cybersecurity firm Authentic8, involves a survey of 163 financial services professionals, and it tackles just that question: why do financial services firms so often fall victim to cyberattacks?

Here’s a hint at the reason: “Financial firms have some of the best-funded IT departments of any industry, that’s no secret,” said Scott Petry, CEO of Authentic8. “What’s perplexing to me, with data breaches and privacy violations at an all-time high, is how deep the divide still runs between IT, compliance and legal professionals in many firms.”

The report’s title spells out the problem: “Surprising Disconnect Over Compliance and Secure Web Use at Financial Firms.”

Keep reading at CUInsight

CU 2.0 Podcast Episode 79 Dan Mayfield LeveragePoint on Cannabis and Credit Unions

Welcome to Up in Smoke, Part 4 – credit unions and weed.

Buckle up. Dan Mayfield, public affairs director at LeveragePoint, a strategic communications firm in Albuquerque NM, will be our guide in this podcast to the cannabis business in New Mexico. 

Cash, public safety, and a $130 million dollar annual business take. That’s legal marijuana in New Mexico — and right now credit unions are scrambling to help serve this market.

LeveragePoint has a ringside seat and that’s because it is wholly owned by the Credit Union Association of New Mexico.

You heard that right.

That also means it’s playing a key role in setting up the CU Cannabiz show in Chicago in April and Mayfield offers more details on that in this podcast.

Up in Smoke Part 1 here, Part 2 here, Part 3 here.

Part 3 is a podcast with Paul Stull, CEO of the Credit Union Association of New Mexico.

What’s important here is that cannabis is a potentially huge market for credit unions. It has risks, sure.

But it has a grand upside.

Here all about all sides in this podcast.  It’s a fast ride.

Listen here

Like what you are hearing? Find out how you can help sponsor this podcast here. Very affordable sponsorship packages are available. Email rjmcgarvey@gmail.com

Find out more about CU2.0 and the digital transformation of credit unions here. It’s a journey every credit union needs to take. Pronto

CU 2.0 Podcast Episode 78 Paul Stull on Cannabis and Credit Unions, Up in Smoke 3

Toke up – the CU2.0 Podcast is back with another look at cannabis and credit unions, a topic we last looked at a year ago in a two part podcast. Part 1 here, Part 2 here.

Welcome to Part 3, 2020 edition of Up in Smoke, credit union style.

Today’s guest is Paul Stull CEO of the Credit Union Association of New Mexico, which is sponsoring the Credit Union Cannabiz Conference, April 5-8 in Chicago.

What this is about is the business of banking cannabis companies, said Stull.  And he fervently believes that cannabis – so far an untouchable for the big national banks – is a prime opportunity for credit unions to build dynamic and profitable business account relationships that involve both deposits and lending.

And this is business that right now the national banks won’t take on.

About two in every three states presently has legal marijuana in some form (medical, recreational or both).

Said Stull: “Most credit unions are involved in banking marijuana money whether they know it or not.”

His argument: do this openly, consciously, charge accordingly and it’s a win win, for the credit union, also for the marijuana business.

In the podcast, Stull offers a deep dive into why cannabis banking also benefits local communities – meaning this is a solid credit union business direction.

The opportunities with cannabis for credit unions right now looks immense.

Stay tuned because in a few weeks another cannabis themed podcast will drop.

Listen here

Like what you are hearing? Find out how you can help sponsor this podcast here. Very affordable sponsorship packages are available. Email rjmcgarvey@gmail.com

Find out more about CU2.0 and the digital transformation of credit unions here. It’s a journey every credit union needs to take. Pronto

CU2.0 Podcast Episode 77 Shondell Varcianna on the Content You Need to Grow

Want to grow your member base? Want to target particular kinds of members?

Content is your friend, says Shondell Varcianna, a financial services veteran who nowadays focuses on providing select financial institutions with finely targeted digital content – blog posts – for distribution via the credit union website, also social media.

Her driving point: content works when it is written to meet the specific needs of a targeted group.  It can’t be all things to all people.

She especially recommends financial education content.  Millennials, for instance, want info on home buying.  Give it to them and you just may get the mortgage.

The key: have a strategy about what groups you want and what you want to sell them. The content will follow.

This is an informative podcast about a topic that usually is treated superficially. This is a deeper dive and it’s worth it because this is how to supercharge member growth.

Listen here

Like what you are hearing? Find out how you can help sponsor this podcast here. Very affordable sponsorship packages are available. Email rjmcgarvey@gmail.com

Find out more about CU2.0 and the digital transformation of credit unions here. It’s a journey every credit union needs to take. Pronto

CU2.0 Podcast Episode 76 Matt Johnner BankLabs on Commercial Lending and Your Credit Union

It just may be topic one in credit union c suites – how do we make more profitable loans?

Matt Johnner of BankLabs – a developer of cloud based technology solutions for financial institutions – has a suggestion: Go after lending to two of the country’s biggest industrial segments, agriculture and construction.

And fast track this by using your present member base to segue into commercial lending into those segments.

A good car loan experience for a farmer’s wife, or a home builder’s husband, just may lead to a 7 figure commercial loan – for the credit union that is thinking that way.

So Johnner likes the “law of attraction,” which essentially says that what we focus on comes into our life.

Start thinking on construction and ag loans and they just may happen for you.

His company also is a provider of mobile tools that automate lending and loan management and, he says, many lenders are still rooted in legacy technology (spreadsheets). A newcomer to the field who has the right technology in place just may start closing deals.

What will the regulator say? Johnner addresses that in this podcast.

He also talks about buying a community bank to accelerate success in commercial lending – but stresses there are other ways.

If you want more high profit loans this is a must podcast.

Like what you are hearing? Find out how you can help sponsor this podcast here. Very affordable sponsorship packages are available. Email rjmcgarvey@gmail.com

Find out more about CU2.0 and the digital transformation of credit unions here. It’s a journey every credit union needs to take. Pronto