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Industry roundup: 20 December

Customers Bank:  new brand vision, “fintech-forward-focused banking institution”

Customers Bank, one of the country's top 100 digital forward banks with USD $20 billion in assets, has participated in and launched about 347,000 Paycheck Protection Program loans for a total of USD $10 billion and has grown exponentially over the last two years. As a result of these products and growth in blockchain-based real-time payment platforms for cryptocurrencies and digital asset institutions that have raised $1.5 billion in deposits, Customers Bank goes beyond its geographical presence in the northeast to serve customers nationwide. Senior management has undergone a complete transformation to rebrand the bank as a “fintech-forward-focused banking institution” with the stability, regulation, and trust inherent in working with established banks for business and retail clients. The rebranding includes new visions, missions, slogans, logos and websites.

Jay Sidhu, Executive Chairman, Customers Bank, commented that the original Customers Bank brand with the theme of red, white and blue and the American flag became successful. It focuses on helping American dreams and challengers, small business owners, and entrepreneurs to reach their economic and growth goals. Sidhu further stated that Customers Bank as a new nationwide “fintech-forward financial institution” clearly illustrates modernization to the markets, investors and customers.

Driven by the fintech community bank's hybrid business model and the bank's recent success, Customers Bank has introduced other new commercial financial product lines and opened additional offices in major metropolitan markets across the country. New customers attracted to banks are young, diverse, tech-savvy, and seek different customer experiences. From logos to websites, apps, social media and office spaces, the new brand aims to capture this new wave. Sam Sidu, President and Chief Executive Officer of Customers Bank, commented that the main goal is to provide customers with growth opportunities to reach their financial goals and give them the confidence to take on the challenge of the future.

It is a complex task to take a rebranding initiative for a financial institution with national business lines and customers. Customers Bank analyzed all of the details of the brand by examining the logos and colours of external experience and internal beliefs. The logo has two overlapping blue rings that represent the bank's passion with connecting with customers and providing highly personalized services. Additionally, the image keeps the connection symbol even if rotated and perfectly embodies the new brand of Customers Bank.

Customers Bank was launched in 2009 by Jay Sidhu and a small number of investors with the acquisition of the struggling New Century Bank, which had approximately USD $250 million in assets and several branches in southeastern Pennsylvania. Customers Bank quickly established their brand based on outstanding customer experience, agility and innovation.

The bank has grown into a digital forward financial institution that offers services for unique business areas, setting it apart from other banks, such as warehouse lending, specialty lending, fund finance and other products and services. Customers Bank, with only a few branches, is growing and developing rapidly, and its success has attracted the attention of Wall Street investors and increased shareholder value.

Furthermore, the new orientation leverages Customers Banks' agility, innovation and entrepreneurship to act like a fintech while providing customers with the regulatory stability of large banks. Due to this regulatory stability, Customers Bank provides a compelling link between fintechs with no experience managing oversight or regulatory issues that customers seek in traditional financial institutions. Customers Bank is positioned as an excellent connector that can support challengers and provide them the functions and features expected from large banks.

For more information and the new brand identity, please visit www.customersbank.com.

 

Botnet detection to combat fraud: expected rollout October 2022 in Australia

As criminals continue to become sophisticated in fraudulent activities, businesses and customers need to stay ahead of the game. Visa announced Australian e-commerce payment providers will be required to invest in botnet detection capabilities by October 2022.

The new requirements are designed to help Australian companies tackle payment fraud using enumerated attacks. This is a criminal act in which a scammer uses a large botnet to test and guess payment credentials using automation.

Joe Cunningham, Head of Risk for Asia Pacific, Visa, commented that Australia will be the first country to introduce Visa’s botnet detection requirements in response to the surge in attacks over the last twelve months. Cunningham further stated that botnet detection is important to protect sellers from malicious cyberattacks. Visa will work with seller acquisition banks or payment gateways to properly manage the company closest to the online checkout page, ensuring precise and accurate measures are in place.

Botnet detection controls include limiting the number of transactions a merchant can process in a minute with a single card, scanning for shopping cart data anomalies, locking accounts after a series of failed login attempts, and introducing CAPCHAs.

According to Cunningham, a study conducted by YouGov for the company found that 45% of Australian consumers find CAPTCHA-style tools disruptive in online shopping, while more than three-quarters (76%) support the use of technology to help keep their online payments secure.

 

The first cross-border IBAN-Name Check (confirmation of payee) introduced for payments between France and the Netherlands

SurePay and SEPAMail.eu work with StreamMind to prevent fraud and misdirection in cross-border payments. The technology companies announced the introduction of the first cross-border International Bank Account Number (IBAN) check. This service allows businesses and banks to ensure that the account information entered matches the beneficiaries intended for making cross-border payments between France and the Netherlands, the first step towards a pan-European solution to the fight against fraud.

This partnership connects more than thirty Dutch banks with one hundred fourteen French banks. SurePay uses the IBAN-Name Check to validate 99.5% of all online payments in the Netherlands. SEPAmail.eu provides IBAN verification services to over 90% of all corporate bank accounts in France. StreamMind establishes a connection between these two networks.

Furthermore, these alliances enable banks, consumers and businesses to verify the accuracy of the account holder and significantly reduce fraud and payment errors in France and the Netherlands. Additionally, the IBAN-Name Check increases efficiency and improves the customer experience.

The IBAN-Name Check has been integrated into online banking of Dutch banks since 2017 and checks the name of the account holder at the time of payment. This will prevent mistakes and fraud. A warning is issued 100,000 times daily that the name and account owner are not the same. This gives consumers and businesses the peace of mind that payments will be paid to the intended account owner.

When introduced in 2017, Rabobank and, later, other Dutch banks were the first banks in the world to protect their customers with this service. Rabobank will also be the first Dutch bank to offer customers this cross-border IBAN-Name Check service. IBAN-Name Check is also used by companies such as insurance companies, lenders, government authorities and energy companies to prevent fraud or to accept new suppliers, customers and employees.

Payments across Europe are increasingly shifting to digital channels. This has led to a surge in fraud through phishing, spoofing, APP scams, invoice/ billing scams and CEO scams. In addition, fraud is becoming more and more international, with criminals using foreign bank accounts for fraudulent purposes.

Since the implementation of IBAN-Name Check in Dutch banks and businesses in 2017, customers have seen a reduction in reported fraud by 81% and in misdirected payments by 67% according to David-Jan Janse, CEO and Co-Founder, SurePay. He further added that the logical next step was to deploy a cross-border payment solution to fight fraud with the strong partnerships of SEPAmail.eu and StreamMind to achieve that goal.

Jacques Vanhautère, CEO, SEPAmail.eu, stated that the partnerships create an authentic international solution to fight against IBAN fraud, and the connection between France and the Netherlands is an initial step to cross-Europe IBAN reliability solutions for both communities.

In order to secure exchanges and transactions between organizations and people, the new partnerships create an international development in the fight against payment fraud, according to Nicolas Muhadri, CEO, StreamMind. Additionally, there are further discussions with other European countries on embracing this endeavor to combat fraud.

"BNPL" Brand PaySlowSlow in Singapore

OxPay, a Singapore-based financial services provider, has announced a partnership with Malaysia's BNPL (buy now pay later) PaySlowSlow Singapore branch to provide branded payment gateways and merchant acquisition services in the city-state.

PaySlowSlow was launched in September 2021 and is a subsidiary of the Australian publicly traded Fatfish Group Limited. It enables retailers the option to buy now and pay 0% interest on four equal instalments over a four-month period. PaySlowSlow aims to become a well-known retail BNPL brand in the region by expanding its presence in key markets in Southeast Asia. Furthermore, PaySlowSlow plans to launch its services to 500 merchants and a total monthly transaction value of approximately S $1 million in the first quarter of 2022, increasing payment processing volumes of OxPay. All financial risks, including defaults, lie with the BNPL brand and are not related to OxPay.

BNPL is a fast-growing global market, forecasted to grow from US $7.3 billion in 2019 to about US $33.6 billion in 2027, with an average annual growth rate of 21.2%, according to findings from the Coherent Market Insights Report.

Asia is expected to become the fastest growing BNPL region in the world due to the proliferation of Internet users. e-Conomy SEA 2021, estimates by Google, Temasek, Bain & Company, show that in 2021 approximately forty million new internet users will join the booming digital economy of Southeast Asia, bringing the total to four hundred forty million internet users.

According to a consumer survey conducted by Finder, about 1.1 million residents in Singapore, or 38% of the population, use BNPL. Additionally, consumer interest in BNPL and the pandemic accelerated the transition to digital platforms such as e-commerce and mobile payments.

Henry Tan, Managing Director, OxPay, commented that the partnership between OxPay and PaySlowSlow for operations in Singapore provide a significant opportunity to grow e-commerce. Consumers are increasingly looking to BNPL options to ease financial pressure and make online transactions easier and more convenient. BNPL offers growth market opportunities for both retailers and payment providers.

OxPay focuses on serving merchants in the retail, transportation, food and beverage industries. Its wholly owned subsidiary, MC Pay Pte Ltd., founded in 2005, is licensed to major payment institutions in Singapore and is regulated by the Monetary Authority of Singapore under the Payment Services Act of 2019.

The merchant payment services segment, offered by OxPay, is operated through an integrated platform and smart software that allows customers to install or integrate all smart devices (including mobile phones, tablets and intelligent point-of-sale terminals) for merchants with physical stores, or integrate them into websites and applications.

OxPay's second division, Digital Commerce Enabling Solutions, offers complementary services such as the sale and rental of smart point-of-sale terminals, and proprietary and licensed software-as-a-service, which is allowed to be white-labeled. This segment also develops customized software solutions for merchants. OxPay plans to become a regional player and has locations in Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand.

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