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Security check issues kick off Conn. league ed. series

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MERIDEN Conn. (3/22/11)--The Credit Union League of Connecticut’s 2011 Professional Education Series got off to a start with a March 9 all-day session on security, followed Wednesday by a half-day session on check issues, in Wallingford, Conn. The league’s 16-session series, spanning nine months--with a hiatus in August--provides an examination of important and essential areas to credit unions. Nearly 70 individuals from 60 credit unions attended the sessions. Also, the March 9 session included an exhibit of 10 league strategic partners and vendors that provide services to credit unions, including ATM equipment and services, insurance opportunities, marketing, and information security and technology. Speakers included Connecticut Financial Crimes Task Force Detective Mark Solomon, who explored the escalating instances of ATM skimming and fraud; Tom Nash, senior risk management analyst at American Eagle FCU and nationally recognized financial crimes investigator, who provided insight into confronting today’s instances of fraud; Michael Petrone, CUMIS/CUNA Mutual Group risk manager, who provided safety essentials during robberies; and Attorney Craig Smith, author of the online Deposit Account Guide, who reviewed regulations on dealing with checks. “With today’s rapid proliferation of ATM fraud and endless efforts of criminal attempts on all levels to defraud the public, credit unions--indeed, all financial institutions--should never let their guard down when in a position to protect their members and customers,” Solomon said. “After all, individuals put their trust in their financial institutions. They in turn are obligated to be ever vigilant in securing members’ financial assets and putting into place effective safeguards against crime. “I was happy to provide the latest examples of ATM fraud along with guidelines to preventing its success,” he added. “The law enforcement community greatly appreciates the efforts made by the Credit Union League of Connecticut to continually educate its members, as well as its efforts to advance the partnership between them and the law enforcement community.”

CUNA MarketingBusiness Dev. Council names exec committee

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MADISON, Wis. (3/22/11)--The CUNA Marketing and Business Development Council announced its executive committee and officers during the council’s 18th annual conference, March 16-19 in Las Vegas. Officers and executive committee members were selected by the council membership in the annual election preceding the conference. Newly elected council officers are:
* Sean McDonald, chief marketing officer for Liberty Savings FCU, Jersey City, N.J, council chair; * Michelle Hunter, senior vice president marketing and business development for Credit Union of Southern California, Brea, Calif., vice-chair; and * Kathryn Davis, senior vice president of marketing and human resources for Xceed Financial CU, El Segundo, Calif., secretary/treasurer.
Four new members were elected to the executive committee. They are:
* April Clobes, executive vice president for Michigan State University FCU, East Lansing, Mich.; * Andy Reed, manager of business development for American Airlines FCU, Fort Worth, Texas.; * Hilary Reed, vice president of marketing for Bucks First FCU, Bristol, Pa.; and * Debra Trautman, manager of marketing for the Maine Credit Union League, Portland, Maine.
The new members replace outgoing executive committee members who have served their terms: Lesley Carrell, vice president of marketing for Fibre FCU, Longview, Wash.; Tim Draper, vice president of marketing for Navigant CU, Smithfield, R.I.; Anne Legg, vice president of marketing for Cabrillo CU, San Diego; and Carol Payne, vice president of communications and marketing for the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues, Ontario, Calif. The CUNA Marketing & Business Development Council executive committee also includes:
* Amy Davis, vice president of marketing for Red Canoe CU, Longview, Wash.; * Tyler Disburg, chief administrative officer for Montana First CU, Missoula, Mont.; * Yvonne Garand, vice president of marketing and business development for Vermont State ECU, Montpelier, Vt.; and * Nancy Hutchinson, senior vice president of marketing and business development for Minnesota Power ECU, Duluth, Minn.

Security giant RSA hit by cyber attack

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BEDFORD, Mass. (3/22/11)—RSA, the security division of EMC, has been hit by hackers. In an open letter posted on its website, RSA said it experienced an “extremely sophisticated” attack in which information related to the company’s SecurID two-factor authentication products were stolen. The “tokens” are employed by millions of end users, including credit unions. SecurID adds an extra layer of protection to a login process by requiring users to enter a secret code number displayed on a keyfob, or in software, in addition to their password. The number is cryptographically generated and changes every 30 seconds. In an open letter on the company’s website, RSA Executive Chairman Art Coviello categorized the attack as an “advanced persistent threat” and said a company investigation revealed “certain information being extracted from RSA’s systems.” “While at this time we are confident that the information extracted does not enable a successful direct attack on any of our RSA SecurID customers, this information could potentially be used to reduce the effectiveness of a current two-factor authentication implementation as part of a broader attack," Coviello said. Customer and employee security related to other RSA products or personal identifiable information do not appear to have been compromised, Coviello said.

Texas demographics will impact CUs services

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FARMERS BRANCH, Texas (3/22/11)--An expanding population in Texas will impact credit union membership and services, according to the Texas Credit Union league (TCUL). The state’s population has grown by more than four million people during the past decade--a nearly a 21% growth rate, according to research by Rick Grady, TCUL vice president of research, who used data from National Credit Union Administration 5300 call report and the U.S. Census Bureau (LoneStar Leaguer March 18). Although state credit union membership has grown during the past 10 years by about 1.1 million, the percentage growth is nearly four percentage points lower, closing the decade with a growth rate of 16.8%. And while credit union membership was 31% of the state’s population in 2000, it is now only 30%. All this adds up to a credit union market share of the new population at 25%--a solid market share, but still short of where TCUL said it wants to be. So how has the state’s population changed? Statistically speaking, two-thirds of the new growth are Hispanic or Latino, about an eighth are Black or African-American, around 10% each are White or Asian. Not all this population growth was the result of migration or immigration, TCUL said. Births contributed the largest number to the population expansion. And with births comes a follow-on industry of clothing, housing, nursery furniture, day care, schooling, soccer fields and minivans, the league said. Those industries could create more demand for loans and financial services that credit unions could supply. As the composition of the communities change, it can cause not only the types of services credit unions deliver to change, but how they deliver those services as well. And as the influx of new people enters a community, the familiarity with the products and services offered by merchants is minimal and must be discovered, TCUL said.

Two CU CEOs on Atlanta Feds advisory council

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ATLANTA (3/22/11)--Two credit union representatives are among the 13 members appointed to the newly formed Community Depository Institutions Advisory Council (CDIAC) for the Sixth Federal Reserve District, announced the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. The credit union representatives are:
* Mark E. Rosa, Jefferson Financial CU, Metairie, La.; and * James Woodward, SunState FCU, Gainesville, Fla.
The board of governors of the Federal Reserve System has created a national CDIAC to broaden the scope of input on economic credit conditions. To complement the national effort with regional perspectives, each Federal Reserve Bank is establishing a district council comprising representatives from that district’s credit unions, community banks and thrifts. CDIACs will provide input on the economy, lending conditions, and other issues related to community banking. They are being established at Federal Reserve Banks across the country pursuant to the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010. The Sixth District CDIAC will meet twice a year and held its first meeting on Wednesday. The Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta serves the Sixth Federal Reserve District, which encompasses Alabama, Florida, Georgia and parts of Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee. With the Sixth District’s announcement, the district councils are completed.

ATMs must have proper Reg E fee disclosures CMG alert

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ST. LOUIS (3/22/11)--Nationwide, attorneys are looking at financial institutions, including credit unions, to see if the signage required by Regulation E is properly affixed to ATMs. If it is not, litigation could ensue and a violation of Regulation E may result in a fine of up to $500,000 plus costs and attorney fees based on the class action filing, warns the Missouri Credit Union Association (MCUA). Regulation E requires that if a credit union operates an ATM and charges members or nonmembers a fee for transactions and/or balance inquiries, it must ensure all ATMs comply with the fee disclosure requirements (The Missouri difference March 18). When an ATM fee is charged, credit unions should provide the following three disclosures as recently stated in a CUNA Mutual Risk Alert:
* Notice at ATM: Post a sign in a prominent and conspicuous location on or at every ATM operated by the credit union stating that a fee will (or may) apply. It is not necessary to state the amount of the fee on the sign. * Terminal screen: Display the amount of the fee on the ATM screen. Once notified, ATM users must be able to cancel the transaction to avoid the fee. *Receipt: Disclose the fee on the transaction receipt.
To ensure compliance, credit unions should follow their written procedures consistently and regularly inspect their ATM signage and functionality. Credit unions must document and retain evidence of Regulation E compliance efforts, MCUA said.

Miracle on Ice goalie Jim Craig to speak at CUANY convention

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ALBANY, N.Y. (3/22/11)--Jim Craig, the starting goalie of the 1980 U.S. Olympic gold medal “Miracle on Ice” hockey team, will be the keynote speaker at the Credit Union Association of New York’s Annual Meeting and Convention on June 3. With the theme “Credit Unions: Standing Tall,” this year’s event will take place at the Conference Center at Lake Placid from June 2-5. Craig’s performance at the Lake Placid Games is legendary. Against the heavily favored Soviet Union, he made 39 saves on 42 shots, leading the U.S. to an improbable 4-3 victory. The U.S. went on to defeat Finland to win the gold medal. Craig followed his historic hockey career with with an award-winning career in sales and marketing, utilizing the lessons he’s learned along the way to become a powerful speaker. In 2006, he directed his competitive zeal and devotion to innovation and teamwork when he launch launched Gold Medal Strategies, a Boston area-based motivational speaking and sales training company. “Gold Medal Strategies: Business Lessons from America’s Miracle Team” is also the title of new book due from Craig and best-selling author Don Yaeger, scheduled for publication in April.