What’s this Security Awareness Program you speak of?

In case you didn’t know, a security awareness program is a crucial piece of the newest multi-factor authentication (MFA) guidance that was put in place January of 2012. So if you’re a financial institution looking for a good example of why you should have a security awareness program, or you’re just trying to figure out what people are talking about pertaining security awareness, this is where you’re going to find it.

Security is a huge topic these days, especially when it comes to money. I mean, it’s my money! Why wouldn’t I know where it is? The truth is that not many people fully understand how to keep their valuables secure, and I mean actually SECURE. The general public has this skewed notion that “If I put my money in a bank, it’s positively secure!” and those of us who’ve been victims of Identity theft (If you’re a business consumer ACH/Wire Fraud or even a Corporate Account Takeover) know that’s not exactly true. My point is that if I knew more about my personal security before I had been criminalized, at least I would have my money and quite possibly my sense of security.

Why would I want a Security Awareness Program?

This is where the standpoint of a financial institution comes in. Say I’m “Mr. John Smith”, a business account holder at ABC bank, and I own a chain of sports gear manufacturing plants. My knowledge of security is limited; my perception of security is to keep unauthorized individuals from walking into my facility. My focus is my business; keeping my retail partners pleased, making sure my manufacturing quality is top notch and keeping my books straight. I can’t just put my revenues in my mattress, I need to make payroll and pay my bills! So my solution would be to put my money in a fine financial institution, they can worry about the security of my financials right? WRONG! The fact is I don’t know I’m wrong, or why for that matter.  Though, if someone were to inform me how pertinent my knowledge of security should be, maybe I’d be more likely to take an interest.  Hence the importance of a quality Security Awareness Program!

Now knowing that a security awareness program is relevant to my financial institution, what am I supposed to do about it? For one, not just any security awareness program will do. Sure I can put a paragraph or two up on my website and pray someone takes the time to read it (which is what I see most banks doing these days) OR I can create a full, well planned security awareness program to inform my valuable customers about the importance of security and how being knowledgeable could prevent disaster. Not only that, but say I’m “Mr. John Smith” again and one of my business partners takes me to a workshop that their financial institution has taken so much time and resources to put together. It takes an ounce of my time for a pounds worth of that secure feeling (which is why I chose my bank in the first place). I look at how my bank’s “paragraph or two”, that I seemed to have missed, pales in comparison to this bank’s security awareness program. I mean, they actually took the time to put together a Program and just because their Security awareness program shows so much initiative towards the customer’s needs, I’m switching banks.

What are you waiting for?

InfoSight can help you educate your retail and commercial customers about online fraud and ensure you fulfill your compliance obligations as a financial institution. At the same time, you’ll be able to increase revenues by creating cross-sales and new-sales opportunities, drive new product adoption, and more. Ask us how! Click here to send us an email