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Why Lloyds Banking Group, Barclays, and Royal Bank of Scotland Are Plunging Today

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Walker completes graduate school of banking

Steve Walker, Sr. Vice President of Citizens Bank, was among the 205 bankers receiving graduation diplomas on June 3 from the Graduate School of Banking at Louisiana State University. This three-year program provides courses covering all aspects of banking, economics and related subjects. Students traveled from 23 states and Mexico to participate in this session.

Completion of the Graduate School of Banking (GSB) program is a standard prerequisite to professional advancement in many banks. Sponsored by 15 southern state bankers associations in cooperation with the Division of Continuing Education at LSU, the banking school requires attendance on campus for three years, with extensive bank study assignments between sessions. The faculty consists of bankers, business and professional leaders and educators from all parts of the US

During their three years at the Graduate School of Banking, students receive 180 hours of classroom instruction, 30 hours of reviews, planned evening study, and written final examinations at the end of each session.

Walker began his career at Citizens Bank in 2012 as Market Manager. Walker advises bank clients on their lending and cash management needs.

Walker noted, Attending the Graduate School of Banking at LSU is one of the best decisions Ive made in my banking career. The networking and knowledge gained during the program is invaluable.

Kenneth V. Jones, CEO amp; President for Citizens Bank stated, We are very proud of Walkers accomplishments. To succeed in todays banking world, bank officers need the wisdom and expertise that comes with the knowledge gained from the GSB program. Walker demonstrates the ability and willingness to serve our customers needs, while taking the time to understand the uniqueness of each person and business.

Walker resides in New Tazewell with his wife Lavonda and their two children, Matthew and Makenzie. He received his Bachelor Degree in 1994 from the University of Tennessee and was an Honor Graduate from The Southeastern School of Banking at Vanderbilt University in 2003. Walker volunteers with various community organizations including the American Cancer Society Relay for Life.

For more information on Citizens Bank, please visit our website at or call 1-800-977-2265.

Banks are killing the password, and they can thank the iPhone for that

Many distinct entities are looking to kill the password, or replace it with better, more secure ways of logging into several online services. Banks are among them, and its easy to understand why. They want to protect their money. In light of the many security breaches that have put at risk the identities and online assets of millions of users, banks are encouraging customers to sign up for in-app biometric authentication methods. Scanning a fingerprint, the eye, or recording voice is a lot easier, and more secure, than logging into online banking services using credentials that hackers can steal or social engineer. And the iPhone is a big reason why banks are looking to kill the password.

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In an extensive piece, The New York Times explains the various password alternatives banks use, all related to a certain extent to biometrics.

Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, and Wells Fargo have millions of customers who log into their bank accounts using fingerprints on mobile phones, a feature iPhone introduced with the iPhone 5s, and which later became an integral part of the Apple Pay wireless payments feature.

Apple equipped smartphones with fingerprint sensors all the way back to 2013, and many competitors followed suit. A year later, Apple opened Touch ID to developers and launched Apple Pay. However, its only recently that banks have released apps that can take advantage of the feature.

Other biometrics used include eye scans (Wells Fargo), voice (Citigroup), and facial contours (USAA).

Its important to note that banks are worried that regular username and password logins arent secure because of all the many breaches in the last few years that allowed hackers to steal millions of credentials for various services as well as other identifiable information such as social security numbers.

Financial institutions have toyed for years, with the idea of adding biometric-based security layers to customer accounts but the available technology was cumbersome and expensive. The iPhone and other devices solved that problem, making smartphones practically ubiquitous.

Smartphones are advanced enough to let apps read fingerprints, scan eyes, and record voice in crystal clear quality. Also, smartphones also act as a second layer of protection. If you have your phone and you are authenticating with your fingerprint, it is very likely you, Twin Mill founder and biometrics security expert Samir Nanavati told the Times.

The problem with biometric-based logins is that customers have to agree to make fingerprints, eye scans, and voice accessible by banks. And theres always the theoretical possibility that clever hackers might find ways to compromise this type of security as well. But banks to not store actual fingerprints or eye patterns. Instead, theyre keeping templates made of hard-to-predict numerical sequences.

Other safeguards are also in place, including voice prompts that ensure the user isnt playing a voice recording to log in. Eye-scanning apps tell users to blink and/or move the eyes to avoid someone using a photo to log into an account. Wells Fargo teamed up with EyeVerify, whose technology creates a maps of the veins in the whites of the eye.

In addition to securing accounts better than passwords, biometrics can also transform the entire banking experience, making it faster than before. However, while logins are almost instant, certain operations, like transferring funds, might still require good-old passwords, at least for the time being.

The Times full article on the matter is worth a read and its available at the source link.

New report explores mobile use, banking habits among US adults

Heres perception clashing with reality: Only 17 percent of adults think they spend too much time on their mobile phone, but 56 percent think others are guilty of overuse.

This pot-and-kettle finding comes from the third annual Bank of America Trends in Consumer Mobility Report, an exploration of mobile trends and banking behaviors among US adults who own a smartphone and have an existing banking relationship at a financial institution.

The report revealed that 62 percent of respondents use mobile or online as their preferred method of banking, significantly up from 51 percent in 2015.

More than half (54 percent) of consumers also say they are active users of a mobile banking app, up from 48 percent last year.

And of those mobile banking users, 35 percent access the app once a day or more, while 84 percent check once a week or more.

Millennials are especially active banking app users. Three-quarters of this group say that they constantly access it, with 45 percent checking at least once a day and 21 percent checking several times a day.

The survey also reveals that:

  • most users check balances and statements (85 percent), transfer money between accounts (58 percent) and pay bills (52 percent) when accessing the app;
  • 87 percent of respondents use mobile banking alerts and notifications; top alerts include fraud and unusual activity (54 percent), deposit made (52 percent) and low balance (43 percent); and
  • when they receive an alert, 71 percent of consumers take action, contacting the bank (42 percent), transferring money between accounts (39 percent) and changing spending habits (24 percent).

Digital payments are also increasing in adoption -- 40 percent of respondents say they would use or already use their phone to make purchases at checkout, up from 34 percent in 2015.

Additional report findings:

  • 59 percent of Americans own multiple devices and 24 percent own three or more;
  • many consumers trust their mobile device more than their significant other or family member for advice on directions (53 percent), entertainment (25 percent), medical care (22 percent) and financial services (19 percent);
  • 55 percent of adults say their mobile self differs from their in-person self and that their smartphone makes them more confident (25 percent), more likely to share (23 percent) or funnier (16 percent).

Braun Research Inc, an independent market research company, conducted a nationally representative telephone survey on behalf of Bank of America March 29-April 12. Braun surveyed 1,004 US adults age 18 or older who have a current banking relationship (checking or savings) and a smartphone. The margin of error is plus or minus 3.1 percent with a 95 percent confidence level.

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