What We’re Reading: Free Checking, Online Banking and Malware Attacks

Below are interesting stories the Banking.com staff has been reading over the past week. What have you been reading? Let us know in the comments section below or Tweet @bankingdotcom.

  • Majority of Malware Attacks Occur from Within the U.S.: Survey

American Banker

Contrary to popular belief, the majority of malware attacks originate from within the United States. That’s one of the findings from a recent report published by Perimeter E-Security, Milford, Conn., a company that provides security services to financial institutions. Indeed, Perimeter E-Security found that more than half of all attacks and threats (55.62%) originated from within the United States during the first six months of 2012. The company, which tracked data from 861 of its financial institution customers, credits the “made in the USA” trend to two likely factors: One, the majority of its customers block traffic to and from non-U.S. IP address ranges. And two, the majority of financial institutions “under scrutiny” are almost all U.S.-based.

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  • Mobile, Cloud Security Guidance Needed

Bank Info Security

Last year, federal regulators issued FFIEC authentication guidance for online transactions. But, unfortunately, regulators apparently don’t plan to issue additional guidance on the security issues involved in mobile banking and cloud computing. Larger institutions don’t really need guidance on these topics. Most are addressing risks out of necessity. Higher transaction volumes expose them to more fraud.

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  • Banks Need to Re-imagine Online Banking

Bank Systems & Technology

Banks can revitalize their online banking and bill pay products by shifting from a traditional transactional role to a more consultative one, says Javelin Strategy & Research. Banks can revitalize their online banking and bill pay products by shifting from a traditional transactional role to a more consultative one, making online banking the cornerstone of interactive financial management and pursuing new consumer segments, according to a new report from Javelin Strategy & Research. According to the report, adoption of online banking, bill pay and bill view at banks has maxed out, with minimal growth projected over the next five years. However, banks can reverse this trend by meeting consumer’s expectations that their financial institution help them be smarter with their money, says Javelin.

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  • Free Checking Is Great, But Don’t Forget Quality Service


Today’s rising popularity of credit unions can be attributed to the consumer-driven movement revolving around Bank Transfer Day in November of last year. Hundreds of thousands of bank customers who were sick of fees switched to credit unions — a free checking account was often the reward for those who made the move. Free checking is a wonderful thing indeed. But is it worth it if the cost is poor service? A checking account is likely to be the hub of a consumer’s financial life — it’s where the paycheck goes and how bills get paid. In 2009, a free checking account was common at the nation’s biggest banks.

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  • Payments’ Perfect Storm Makes Way for Mobile


At least one payments executive thinks 2013 will be an enormous year for the advancement of mobile payment technology and usage in the United States. Consumer awareness is up. Smartphones and other new technologies are making mobile payments accessible. And the upcoming switch to EMV (yes, it’s happening) will necessitate a massive turnover in point-of-sale technology anyway. So given this “perfect storm” of major factors, why wouldn’t 2013 be the year for mobile payments? Of course, plenty of mobile payment technology is already available to consumers, but perhaps only Starbucks has really taken off in terms of adoption.

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  • Mobile payments haven’t yet caught on in the United Kingdom

QR Code Press

A recent survey showed that contactless has yet to be seen in a positive light by most people. Although smartphones are spreading like wildfire throughout the United Kingdom, the same cannot be said about mobile payments, regardless of significant efforts that had been made to boost their popularity throughout the Olympics in London. Only 17 percent of people in the U.K. feel that a “cashless future” could be a more convenient one. This information came from a report about the results of a survey performed in the U.K. by Bank Machine, an ATM operator from that country.

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Written by Banking.com Staff