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25 certified as financial counselors in December

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MADISON, Wis. (2/2/09)--Certified Credit Union Financial Counselor designations were awarded to 25 people by the Credit Union National Association in December. This is the fifth class to receive this award since the inception of the program. To be certified, participants must attend the Certified Financial Counselor School: Parts I and II and successfully complete the exams. The program is designed to teach credit union professionals to help members prevent financial difficulties with responsible money management techniques, and how to design and implement a counseling program within their credit unions. For a list of those certified, use the resource link.

DeposZip gains momentum in shared branches

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BURLINGTON, Mass., and SAN DIMAS, Calif. (2/2/09)--Use of DeposZip, a remote deposit capture (RDC) product, is increasing among credit unions and their members nationwide, Financial Services Centers Cooperative (FSCC) and EasCorp announced Wednesday. DeposZip allows members who have access to the Internet and a scanner to deposit checks from home at any time. Digital FCU, Marlborough, Mass., has signed up more than 16,000 RDC users since its implementation. Hanscom (Mass.) FCU went live with DeposZip last year. “RDC levels the competitive playing field with other financial service providers who have a significant brick-and-mortar branch network,” said Craig Roy, Digital FCU senior vice president of support services. “We have put a deposit-taking option in each one of our members’ homes.” Analysts predict that 30% to 50% of financial institutions will offer RDC capabilities to small-business consumers during the next four years, FSCC and EasCorp said. DeposZip is available to all credit unions, including non-shared branching credit unions. The $2 billion-asset EasCorp is located in Burlington, Mass. FSCC, a credit union Shared Branching network with 5,500 full-service deposit taking locations in the U.S., is headquartered in San Dimas, Calif.

Companies advise updating 09 disaster plans

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HAGERSTOWN, Md., and SAN DIMAS, Calif. (2/2/09)--Financial Services Centers Cooperative (FSCC) and Ongoing Operations (OGO) are encouraging credit unions to update and prioritize their disaster recovery plans to include mobile branch recovery and shared branching. “Offering shared branching is a significant safety net during an emergency or disaster,” said Sarah Canepa Bang, FSCC president/CEO, “But the time to plan for an emergency is before it happens. Our goal is to help get credit unions back to work as quickly as possible after a disaster. There is no question that providing continuity of service during disasters increases the public’s confidence in credit unions.” FSCC and OGO partnered last year to offer mobile branch recovery services. A mobile branch with 56 workstations can be deployed within 48 hours, the companies said in a release. “Credit unions that do prepare for potential catastrophes reduce the overall impact on their members, greatly reduce the potential for fraud and financial losses, and generally learn some very sound business practices for competing in the financial industry as a whole,” said OGO President Kirk Drake. FSCC is a credit union Shared Branch Network that provides more than 5,500 deposit-taking locations in the U.S. OGO provides business continuity solutions to credit unions.