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NEW: BizKid$ Adds Another Emmy To Trophy Case

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MADISON, Wis. (6/19/13, UPDATED: 10:30 a.m. CT)--Biz Kid$, a credit union funded public television series that teaches kids about money management and entrepreneurship, has won a national Emmy Award, television's highest honor. The award for Outstanding Achievement in Single Camera Editing was presented Friday to Biz Kid$ in Los Angeles.

This is the second Emmy Award for Biz Kid$. The show won an Emmy Award for Outstanding Achievement in Main Title and Graphic Design in 2009.  It has been nominated for 13 Emmy Awards in the past five years.

Biz Kid$ has continually garnered attention in and outside of the credit union industry. The show as won the Environmental Media Award for Outstanding Children's Television Series, a Silver Telly Award for Outstanding Children's Financial Literacy Programming, and most recently the Parent's Choice Gold Award. In 2010, it also earned the credit union industry's most prestigious honor, the Herb Wegner Award for Outstanding Program.

The National Credit Union Foundation oversees fundraising, outreach and administrative responsibilities of Biz Kid$. During the past six years, more than 300 credit unions and affiliated organizations have raised more than $13.8 million that has supported the show's production, website and curriculum.

Every Biz Kid$ episode begins and ends with a narrator reminding viewers that: "Production funding for Biz Kid$ is provided by America's Credit Unions, where people are worth more than money."

The Emmy Awards recognize creative leadership for artistic, educational and technical achievements within the television industry. The Daytime Emmy Awards recognize outstanding achievement in all creative fields of daytime television production. The series also was nominated for Outstanding Achievement in Sound Mixing and Outstanding Achievement in Sound Editing.

For more information about Biz Kid$, use the link.

New Accounts Have Highest Rate Of Cyberattacks

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SAN JOSE, Calif., and NEW YORK (6/19/13)--New accounts have the highest rate of cyberattacks, with takeover attempts nearly twice that of accounts that are at least six months old, according to Web fraud data compiled by ThreatMetrix Inc.

The data were collected from 1,500 consumers, 9,000 websites and more than 1.7 billion cyberevents from ThreatMetrix's TrustDefender Cybercrime Prevention Platform and ThreatMetrix Global Trust Intelligence Network. The data included new account registration fraud, payment fraud and account takeovers.

Roughly one in every 10 user accounts opened online are originated by cybercriminals applying for new lines of credit, creating profiles on social networking or marketplace sites, and enrolling in authentication schemes, Metrix found. In a recent six-month snapshot ending March 31, attacks on new account registrations using spoofed or synthetic identities had the highest rate of attacks.  Next highest was account logins and payment fraud.

"Account registrations saw the highest rate of attack among the key customer engagement use cases," said Alisdair Faulkner, ThreatMetrix chief products officer.

"This isn't surprising in light of large scale data breaches recently highlighted by Symnatec in its Internet Security Threat Report 2013 and Verizon in its 2013 Data Breach Investigations Report.  These breaches underscore the relative ease of obtaining a person's full identity information sufficient enough to bypass most identity verification capabilities," Faulkner said in a ThreatMetrix blog.

Using botnets and malware, the cybercrooks bypass address-based filters. "The economic impact of these attacks varies by industry," he said, noting that the "common thread is that without automated visibility in the true device, persona, relationship and global behavior, the only alternative is additional verification roadblocks put in front of legitimate customers and extended review and hold-out periods."

What does this mean for credit unions? Take extra precautions with new accounts, especially new online banking accounts and step up verification procedures. And advise members to be extra cautious when making purchases or opening new accounts at vendor over the Internet.

Payments fraud attempts, including online credit card transactions and money transfers, rose to 6.4% from 3.1% during the six months studied, said ThreatMetrix. Faulkner cited these trends as factors:

  • Sophisticated credit card cybergangs adopting banking malware, normally used to hijack banking accounts, to steal full credit card information from consumers as a fake verification step when attempting to log into a bank or credit union account;
  • An increase in the percentage of digital goods sold within the company's customers and expansion of their businesses into new areas, including worldwide business; and
  • An increase in the adoption of Virtual Private Network (VPN) and platform-as-a-service services, which provide "ad hoc tunneling protocols." Cybercriminals favor VPNs because they can bypass blacklisted Internet provider blacklists on these networks.
Account takeover attempts during the period studied nearly doubled (168%). Although these attacks traditionally focused on banking and brokerage sites, they recently have escalated at e-commerce and software-as-a-service companies that store customer data, including credit card details.

ThreatMetrix also noted a rise in account takeovers using more sophisticated "blended" or multi-stage attacks to exploit companies without an integrated solution for malware, device identification and bot protection.

CU System Briefs (06/19/2013)

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  • EWING, N.J. (6/19/13)--The 42,947 members of Credit Union of New Jersey saved more than $3.998 million in 2012, an average savings of $93 per member or $177 per household, said the Ewing, N.J.-based credit union. Loyal high-use households with a deeper relationship with the credit union saved an average $1,122 per household. The numbers are based on statistics from the Credit Union National Association comparing the $332 million asset CUNJ's rates and fees with New Jersey Bank rates and fees related to household balances at the credit union.  The largest savings--$1.79 million--was in home equity/second mortgage loans, with $1.18 million saved in auto loans. "It's in our brand promise to our members, 'We will give you a good deal,'" said President/CEO Andrew L. Jaeger. "Quantifying how CUNJ gives its members a good deal just merely shows that CUNJ stays true to its promise," he added ...
  • ANDOVER, Mass. (6/19/13)--EasCorp President/CEO Jane Melchionda, founder of Credit Unions Kids at Heart, was honored last month with the Community Service Award at The Professional Center for Child Development's (PCCD) Annual Swing into Spring Gala. She received the award for her dedication to helping children and their families, and for Credit Unions Kids at Heart's encouragement of, participation in and financial support of PCCD. Credit Unions Kids at Heart is a group of credit unions that raise funds collectively for programs and services to children receiving treatment at Boston Children's Hospital and their families, as well as other organizations benefitting children ...
  • BOSTON (6/19/13)--
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    Credit Unions Kids At Heart and the Joe Andruzzi Foundation presented a check for $100,000 to Dr. Mark Kieran, director of Pediatric Medical Neuro-Oncology at Boston Children's Hospital to support pediatric brain cancer research. The funds were raised at the foundation's annual New England Celebrities Tackle Cancer Gala, sponsored by Credit Unions Kids at Heart for the fifth year. Andruzzi, an offensive tackle with the New England Patriots from 2000 to 2004, and his wife Jennifer launched the CJ Buckley Brain Cancer Research Fund at the hospital in honor of a patient there. They established the foundation in 2008, after Andruzzi was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins Burkitt's lymphoma. Pictured are, from left: Jane Melchionda, CEO of EasCorp and founder of Credit Unions Kids at Heart and foundation board chairman; Sandra L. Fenwick, president and chief operating officer of Boston Children's Hospital; Jennifer and Joe Andruzzi; Dr. Lucy Buckley, pediatric cardiologist at the hospital and foundation board member; Carter Buckley, president of the CJ Buckley Sailing Scholarship Foundation and Andruzzi Foundation board member; and Dr. Kieran. (Photo provided by Credit Unions Kids at Heart) ...
  • ORLANDO, Fla. (6/19/13)--
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    America's Christian CU, a $257 million asset credit union based in Glendora, Calif., was presented the Friend of Adoption Award at the National Council for Adoption Annual Conference in Orlando, Fla., in recognition of its dedication and commitment to children and families. ACCU has helped make more than 800 adoptions possible through its financial assistance. Pictured are Mendell L. Thompson, president/CEO of ACCU, and Chuck Johnson, president/CEO of the council. The award goes to "those who have gone above and beyond to make a difference in the lives of birthparents, adoptive families and hundreds of thousands of children who are waiting to be adopted," Johnson said. (Photo provided by America's Christian CU) ...
  • BALTIMORE, Md. (6/19/13)--Post Office Credit Union of Maryland, based in Baltimore, has named Carol Bradley as president/CEO, the $34 million asset credit union announced Tuesday. Bradley has been with the credit union since October 2007 and served as both controller and Bank Security Act Officer in the past. She has more than 30 years' experience in accounting and she has experience in both the insurance and the financial industries. She also has been a business owner. Chartered in 1929, the credit union is the oldest credit union in Maryland ...

Serving The Underserved Topic Of CU Magazine Special Report

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MADISON, Wis. (6/19/13)--How credit unions are reaching out to serve the underserved is the focus of a new Web Exclusives special report from Credit Union Magazine, released Monday.

The report features six articles, including coverage of sessions at the National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions' 2013 Annual Conference in Baltimore and at the Center for Financial Services Innovation's Eighth Annual Underbanked Financial Services Forum in Miami, Fla.

The articles include:

  • "Serving Low-Income Populations Requires Innovation."  Community development innovator William Bynum said low-income communities need credit unions to be creative.
  • "Reach the Underserved." Tips for credit unions from Jonathan Mintz, New York City commissioner for consumer affairs.
  • "How to Build Community Partners." A panel's advice: "The only ones that work are those where everybody gets value."
  • "Why Financial Empowerment Matters." Consumer financial education amplifies the impact of other social programs.
  • "Prepare for the 'Tidal Shift' Shaping Financial Services." Mobile banking and hybrid cards are among the changes in services to the unbanked.
  • Scenes from the Federation's 2013 Annual Conference. Speakers urge credit unions: Don't wait for immigration reform to reach out to immigrant community.
Use the links for more information.

Marketing/BD Council Paper Dispels Myths On Marketing

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MADISON, Wis. (6/19/13)--A new white paper from the CUNA Marketing & Business Development Council dispels 10 of the most common misunderstandings about the ever-changing role of credit union marketing.

A new credit union marketer is emerging--one who understands how data can drive decisions and one who measures, shows and shares results for marketing initiatives, says the paper, "Marketing is Easy and Other Myths: Strategies to Demystify 10 Misunderstandings That Plague Credit Union Marketing Professionals."

This marketer knows how to collaborate with other credit unions, while maintaining a unique brand identity. The marketer builds internal bridges, manages risk, and is sought after as a potential CEO, the paper said. For the 21st century marketer to flourish, many myths that affect the profession must be put to rest, it added.

The myths are:

  1.  Marketing is easy.
  2.  Marketing is an expense.
  3.  Advertising and marketing are the same.
  4.  Marketing creates brands.
  5.  Other credit unions are the credit union's greatest competition.
  6.  Marketing on rate is the only way to see success.
  7.  Great marketing has to be expensive.
  8.  The chief financial officer is the arch-enemy of marketing.
  9.  Marketing and business development are the same.
  10.  Marketing is not the pathway to a credit union CEO position.
The paper dispels 10 of the most common misunderstandings by asking:

  • How do marketers show overall value to the credit union?
  • In what ways can credit unions work together to gain market share?
  • How can marketers position their messages to make better connections with consumers?
  • What skills are important to create better business development and marketing programs?
  • How can marketers work better with chief financial officers?
Today's marketer is expected to deliver measurable results, analyze copious amounts of data, become experts on new media, promote relevant content to shifting demographics, and create highly differentiated brands in a sea of new and old competitors, said the paper. The marketer occupies a sophisticated position that requires a careful balance of science and art to manage real-time data and construct messages that turn the heads of consumers, it added.

To access the paper online, use the link.

Mobile Payments Growth, Deposit Automation Head ATM Innovations

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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (6/19/13)--Mobile/contactless payments was identified as the area with the most expected future growth by respondents to the 2013 global ATM Innovation Industry Survey.

About 55% of respondents cited mobile payments as the top area of growth in the ATM Industry Association survey.

"There seems to be no indication of a lack of satisfaction with basic ATM operation and function," the white paper accompanying the survey said. "However, there is definitely an awareness of the need to modernize the connection to mobile devices."

Bill payments, ATM advertising, person-to-person payments, and prepaid cards were all selected by more than 25% of the respondents as other areas of future growth.

Deposit automation was ranked as the top non-core function by respondents, with about 48% of respondents saying it was the No. 1 innovation. Bill payments came in a distant second with 15% listing it as the top innovation.

More than 50% of respondents said that rules and mandates by the primary global card brands are the biggest obstacle to innovation in the ATM industry. "This consensus may continue to rise in the U.S., given current debates about Europay, Mastercard, VISA liability shift and routing choice issues in that country," the white paper said.

Respondents say the area most in need of improvement/modernization is security surrounding the ATM, with 43% selecting that area.

Research Details FIs' Efforts To Improve AML Detection

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BOSTON (6/19/13)--Financial institutions (FIs), including credit unions, are responding to intensifying pressure to identify money laundering by improving their anti-money laundering (AML) detection efforts, according to Aite Group and Early Warning  joint research released Tuesday.

"There is a strong need for more dynamic and real-time data-sharing capabilities both within and among financial institutions," said Julie Conroy, research director in retail banking at Aite Group.

"[Financial institutions] should use improvements in technology to eliminate the clunky and often bureaucratic processes that characterize the sharing of data, and become more dynamic and proactive in their AML detection capabilities. Some early movers in the U.S. market are doing this," she said.

At Early Warning's request, Aite Group interviewed eight financial crime executives from the top 30 U.S. depository financial institutions from May 2012 to June 2012, and 11 financial crime executives from eight of the top 30 U.S. depository financial institutions by asset size between March and April.

Most FIs report that they feel regulatory pressure to focus on AML. At the same time, they face challenges to meet revenue growth goals that impact all cost centers, including compliance. In light of that, FIs report that they are continually examining their AML efforts and seeking creative options to improve both their efficiency and effectiveness.

The number of AML alerts worked by financial institutions went from about 5.76 million in 2009 to an estimated 6.89 million last year.  By 2016, that number is expected to rise to about 10.36 million, Aite Group said.

Technology is seen as key to those efforts across the financial enterprises surveyed, because it enables not only a holistic view into customer activity, but also facilitates collaboration between fraud and AML groups, Aite's report said. That in turn creates opportunities for efficiency while also improving detection and compliance.

"This study demonstrates that with the rapid rise and sophistication in criminal activity, it is more critical than ever that financial institutions fully leverage the benefits of advanced analytics, cross-institution collaboration and information sharing," says Paul Finch, CEO of Early Warning.

CU Magazine Seeks CU Rock Stars Nominations

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MADISON, Wis. (6/19/13)--Credit Union Magazine is seeking credit union rock stars: Unique individuals who demonstrate outstanding innovation in their areas of expertise--and by doing so make the credit union movement a better, more interesting place.

The Credit Union National Association wants to recognize and celebrate the movement's rock stars in a special issue of Credit Union Magazine.

Among the questions to consider in nominating credit union rock stars:

  • How has this person raised the bar on creativity, strategy and execution?
  • What makes this rock star unique?
  • What are the most admirable qualities about this rock star?
To nominate a credit union rock star, use the link.

Rating Website Grades CUs On Consumer Desirability

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SANTA BARBARA, Calif. (6/19/13)--A new website that will grade credit unions for consumer desirability with a 15-point matrix was introduced at the 2013 Conference of the Marketing Association of Credit Unions in Las Vegas., which was developed and is owned by Orien Investments LLC  of Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo, Calif., debuted at the convention with the message, "you don't have to be bigger to be considered better."

The company, which also owns CU-Shopper, the search engine that powers MoveCU, said  the Top Five highest rated credit unions in MoveCU's first database compilation average just $31 million in assets and have an average of less than 1,900 members each.

The site helps consumers find the credit union best for them, said Orien. By entering a ZIP code or city name, potential members will see a list of credit unions, with a five-point start system to indicate overall desirability and a map of their branches in that area. Users clicking on specific credit unions are shown more detailed information about the credit union.

The search engine uses National Credit Union Administration 5300 Call Report data to analyze every credit union in the U.S. Unlike financial rating agencies, CU-Shopper uses a 15-point matrix concentrating on price, quality and convenience factors.