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CUNA Mutual to offer cybersecurity incident package

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MADISON, Wis., and NEW YORK (10/1/10)--CUNA Mutual Group has teamed up with risk consulting company Kroll to offer credit unions and related organizations a new Cyber & Security Incident (CSI) Package. The CSI Package, now available, pairs a broad insurance policy with two levels of data breach services to protect credit unions and their members in case an internal data breach compromises sensitive member data. "The evolution of the cyber world and virtual servicing is creating an emerging set of new risk exposures for credit unions," said Chuck Cashman, director in CUNA Mutual's Credit Union Protection Product Management. Stolen laptops, employee sabotage, network hackers, lost data disks and negligent data disposal are some of the potentially catastrophic risks credit unions face, said the insurance and financial services company. "These risks are linked to security incidents or direct breaches of credit union data, unlike the highly publicized third-party data breaches at retailers or merchant processors," Cashman said. "An internal data breach can result in more than lost data. It can damage a credit union's reputation, shake members' trust and cost tens of thousands of dollars to repair," he added. According to the Identity Theft Resource Center, 42 data breaches involving financial institutions have occurred in 2010, well on the way to surpassing the 62 incidents in 2009. The 2008 CUNA Technology & Spending Report from the Credit Union National Association stated that more than 40% of credit unions experienced at least one incident of identity theft in 2008. The package has two available policies that address losses not typically covered by traditional insurance policies. The entry-level CSI Basic Policy and the more robust CSI Advantage Policy both contain liability and expense insurance components manufactured and underwritten by CUMIS Insurance Society Inc., a member of the CUNA Mutual Group. These options are available with either CSI policy:
* Security breach liability; * Website publishing liability; * Replacement/restoration of electronic data; * Extortion threats; and * Business income and extra expense.
These options are available only with the CSI Advantage Policy:
* Programming errors and omissions liability; * Public relations expertise; * Security breach expense; and * CUMIS Advantage endorsement.
Upon CSI policy acceptance, the New York-based Kroll will provide data breach services. Its online Incident Preparedness resources will help credit unions benchmark data security levels, identify weak spots and heighten breach exposure awareness. Kroll also offers the Incident Response & Recovery Service that will rapidly trigger a defensible investigation of data loss and methods to communicate required details and desired safeguards to affected members. It will work with the credit union on these best practices:
* Intentional attack investigation/pursuit and recovery of data; * Evidence collection and incident evaluation; * Identification of the impacted audience; * Incident containment guidance; * State-specific breach notification legislation expertise; * Contact information update and standardization for improved notification results; and * Public relations expertise to deliver a controlled, consistent message.
Krolls' Member ID Consultation & Restoration Services is also available to deliver consistent information to members about their credit union's data loss, along with personal access to licensed investigators for expert answers and full-service restoration for members experiencing identity theft due to the incident. The policies were designed after feedback from 75 credit unions.

CUMA to offer Harmony Loans to CUs

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TYSONS CORNER, Va. (9/30/10)--The Credit Union Mortgage Association (CUMA) will offer the Harmony Loan, through a partnership with Mortgage Harmony Corp., to more than 40 credit unions in the Washington, D.C., area. The Harmony Loan is a consumer-initiated interest rate-resetting mortgage. It allows homeowners to adjust their interest rates without a traditional refinance. For lenders, the loan minimizes prepayment turnover that causes loss of market share, servicing stream and customer loyalty. Offering the loan to credit unions also will free up CUMA’s loan officers to focus on new loan originations, the companies said in a release. CUMA of Fairfax, Va., is owned by credit unions in Virginia, Maryland, Washington, D.C., and Pennsylvania. It provides origination, underwriting, closing and servicing solutions.

Incentive added for Online Discovery Conference

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MADISON, Wis. (9/29/10)--CUNA Mutual Group has added an incentive to credit unions who attend its free Online Discovery Conference Nov. 3. Conference registration is open. One credit union will win a $5,000 Discovery grant for attending. Points will be awarded based on how fully attendees participate in the conference, including chat rooms, Webinars, exhibit hall booth visits and documents viewed. The attendee who earns the most points will be declared the winner on Nov. 4. Other prizes also will be awarded in the Discovery Expo Center, the trade show component of the conference. Included are a personalized on-site Health Care Reform consultation for a credit union, an iPad, Ipod Touch 32G, a Kindle 3G wireless e-reading device, a one-year subscription to the CUNA Mutual Group Compliance Journal and a $250 TicketMaster gift certificate. Online Discovery is the Web-based equivalent of a face-to-face conference without the associated expenses or time away from the office. Estimated at a $250 value, Virtual Discovery Conference is free in celebration of CUNA Mutual’s 75th anniversary. The event is designed for CEOs and senior leadership teams of credit unions. However, credit union and league employees can attend. For more information, use the link.

PSCU Financial Services launches P2P online bill payment

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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (9/28/10)--PSCU Financial Services has launched a person-to-person payment option, Zashpay, for its PayLynx online bill payment platform. ZashPay, from Fiserv, will allow credit union members who are PayLynx subscribers to transmit or receive money using existing online banking accounts. More than 60 credit unions already have signed up for the service. ZashPay allows payments to be deducted directly from a sender’s banking account and directly deposited into a recipient’s account in one business day. The transactions are conducted as securely as online bill payments. “With ZashPay, users are always directed back to their financial institution’s website rather than to a third-party site, creating an advantage for our credit unions,” said Leslie Reistrup, PSCU Financial Services director of e-commerce. PSCU Financial Services, St. Petersburg, Fla., is a nonprofit cooperative that serves more than 1,500 financial institutions nationwide.

E-statement use continues to rise

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MADISON, Wis. (9/27/10)--Use of e-statement stuffers is on the rise, as credit unions aim to provide members with an easier way to view information compared with a print statement, said the Credit Union National Association (CUNA). Credit unions with more than $50 million in assets have about 12.5 million e-statement users who generate 50 cents to 75 cents per month in savings or $75 million a year in industry savings, according to Ron Daly, president/CEO of DigitalMailer. “A few sheets of paper and a half a dollar in postage might seem like a small expense, but over time, it’s a significant savings,” Daly said on DigitalMailer’s blog. CUNA is offering two new titles for e-statement stuffers, including one that promotes the 2010 International Credit Union (ICU) Day theme. The new e-statement stuffers are: “There’s Nothing Like a Credit Union,” and one on ICU Day’s theme, “Local. Trusted. Serving YOU.” Credit unions can purchase the stuffers on the CUNA site, www.cuna.org, for whatever cost they can afford by providing the price in the comments box when ordering. If credit unions provide $0, they can download the stuffers at no cost. The stuffers are valued at $245 each. The statement stuffers also include:
* Hosting instructions; * JPEG graphic of the e-statement stuffer for use as a link button or banner ad; * Flash file of the e-statement stuffer; and * HTML file of the e-statement stuffer.
ICU Day will take place Oct. 21. For more information, use the links.

Reloadable prepaid cards are gateway for Gen Y

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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (9/24/10)--Credit unions should use reloadable prepaid cards as a gateway product for Generation Y, the underserved and others who cannot qualify for a checking account, according to PSCU Financial Services Director Marketing Antonio Hill. Hill will speak on a panel about debit and prepaid cards at the 18th annual ATM, Debit and Prepaid Forum Oct. 3-5 in Phoenix. “Credit unions can use reloadable prepaid cards as a starter card to teach financial responsibility to young teens,” Hill said. “These cards also provide adults who do not qualify for a checking account with a ‘second chance’ to demonstrate responsible financial behavior. The goal is to develop a relationship with both target groups and ultimately offer them a checking account, debit card and eventually other products that produce higher revenues.” Debit cards offer much greater revenue potential than prepaid cards, but credit unions can use prepaid cards to attract members and earn their loyalty, he added. PSCU Financial Services, a St. Petersburg, Fla.-based credit union service organization, serves more than 1,500 financial institutions nationwide, including credit unions.

CO-OP ATM Managed Services now available

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RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif. (9/23/10)--CO-OP Financial Services has announced that CO-OP ATM Managed Services is available. The services will help credit unions outsource the implementation and management of their ATMs. With CO-OP ATM Managed Services, credit unions turn over their ATM-related issues to one source. The suite aims to help credit unions cut costs, simplify management and maximize the member experience at the ATM, CO-OP said. Specifically, ATM Managed Services offers credit unions:
* Fleet consultation and financing, including technology recommendations and financing/leasing analysis and options; * Fleet maximization and innovation, including deployment and implementation of new or upgraded devices and compliance updates; * Fleet management and coordination, including device support, management of vendor services, and a single source for support and billing; and * ATM processing, including CO-OP Connect infrastructure, terminal driving, reporting, advanced fraud detection and prevention and adjustment processing.
CO-OP, Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., provides network and payment services to credit unions, and 28,000 surcharge-free ATMs and 4,000 shared branching locations.

TMG to arm ATMs with anti-skimming technology

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DES MOINES, Iowa (9/23/10)--The Members Group (TMG) will offer ADT Anti-Skim ATM Security Solutions to all clients who operate ATM networks. A referral program with ADT Security Services will provide clients with pre-and post-sales support. ADT will install and service the devices, which aim to prevent fraud related to skimming. ADT Anti-Skim solutions offer several layers of protection, including a surface sensor device and an electronic anti-skim jamming device. The surface sensor can detect the presence of a foreign object placed over an ATM’s card entry slot. It triggers a video surveillance sequence or silent alarm. The anti-skim jamming device renders a skimming device useless. Skimming attacks are reported rarely by financial institutions, according to Karen Postma, TMG senior cards risk manager. If a financial institution connects Anti-Skim with ADT’s command center, reports of attacks can be documented, which helps law enforcement shut down crime rings, TMG said. “Many of our clients operate ATM networks in particularly hard-hit regions,” Postma said. There has been a rise in skimming attacks along the East and West Coasts, TMG added. TMG is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Affiliates Management Company, which is owned by Iowa credit unions and their members.

TMGFS launches structured finance for CUSOs

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DES MOINES, Iowa (9/22/10)--TMG Financial Services (TMGFS) has created CU Structured Finance LLC, which aims to help credit union service organizations (CUSOs) secure and collateralize their debt. CU Structured Finance provides a secured, line-of-credit approach to financing; access to capital beyond the capacity of individual CUSO owners; the ability to access credit as the need arises by expanding its lending syndicate; and market price for loan rates. The idea for the solution began after TMG launched its Collateralized Advance Program, to help fund the purchases of credit union credit card portfolios, according to Jeff Russell, TMGFS president/CEO. “The question I am asked most often is not why, but how,” he said. “The why is simple--there was simply not access to the type of funding we needed. The how is more complicated, but it was born out of necessity and has evolved into a significant benefit for credit unions looking to put their excess liquidity to work in the credit union industry.” TMGFS is offering a white paper, “Credit Unions and Collaboration: The Future of Investing Capital,” to provide a closer look at the need for credit unions to find different funding streams. A webinar about CU Structured Finance also will take place Oct. 5 at 1 p.m. CT.

CU Centers takes shared-branching stats to convention

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INDIANAPOLIS (9/22/10)--Credit Union Centers will attend the 76th annual Indiana Credit Union League Convention Sept. 22-24 in Indianapolis and present data from Raddon Financial Group about shared branching. Shared branching users make up 6.8% of all households at the average credit union and bring in 12.7% of profit, Raddon said in its 2009 study. On average, the annual household profit from shared branching users is $90.25, compared with a profit of $7.07 from households that don’t use shared branching. Credit unions’ average profit on shared branching transactions is $47.53, according to the data. Credit unions can save money through shared branching, said Credit Union Centers. In April 2010, Credit Union 1, Rantoul, Ill., netted $7,152 in excess of its cost, which annualized to an estimated $85,824 in additional income for the credit union. Credit Union Centers has more than 200 shared branches in Indiana and 4,000 nationwide.

Aimbridges hosted auto loan platform available

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ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (9/21/10)--Aimbridge, which is part of CRIF Lending Solutions, announced that AimbridgeSelect is now available. AimbridgeSelect is a fully customizable version of its hosted auto-lending automation platform. The solution aims to provide credit unions and credit union service organizations with control over auto-lending criteria and underwriting guidelines for their indirect and direct loan origination programs so they can offer new products and services quicker. AimbridgeSelect features:
* Underwriting criteria customization; * Dealer management and representation; * After-hours underwriting; and * Leasing support.
Aimbridge is based in Englewood, Colo.

Loan participations paper offered by lending council

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MADISON, Wis. (9/17/10)--Loan participations can be a lifeline for credit unions, according to a new white paper from the CUNA Lending Council. The council’s paper, “Loan Participations,” discusses the benefits of loan participations, which means borrowers share loan risks and rewards. Loan participations can be a source for selling loans to keep under the 12.25% business lending cap, offer geographic and loan type diversification, and yield three times the amount of the average investment. But while loan participations have benefits, there are drawbacks. If a loan fails, the losses are shared, the paper said. The paper examines business models using loan participations, a sample policy, board questions, regulatory oversight information and information on finding a partner. A credit union board, in its role as watchdog, needs to decide whether management has a thorough understanding of the risks, underwriting policies, pricing and terms of each loan, whether the loan is for member business real estate or construction lending. Managing the participation loans requires a calculated approach from experienced lending staff. The loans require constant oversight because market risk and credit risk change over the loan term, the paper added. For more information, use the link.

Three CUNA Mutual products celebrate 50 years

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MADISON, Wis. (9/16/10)--Employees from CUNA Mutual Group’s Credit Union Protection, Group Benefits and Retirement Plan Services products areas met Monday at the company’s Madison, Wis., headquarters for a ceremony on Monday recognizing the products’ 50-year anniversaries. In 1960, the CUMIS Insurance Society, Inc., along with the first Package of Protection and 578 Full Discovery Bond, were introduced under the umbrella of Credit Union Protection. A full range of Credit Union Protection products evolved from these core products, including insurance solutions, risk management services and loss recovery assistance, said Chad Nitschke, vice president of commercial products. “More than 7,200 credit unions rely on CUNA Mutual’s insurance and risk management solutions and, of those we serve, we maintain a 98% renewal retention rate,” Nitschke said. Also in 1960, CUNA Mutual began promoting “retirement income insurance” to its customers. “Fifty years later, our value proposition continues with the goal of looking after the financial welfare of credit union employees,” said Tom Eckert, vice president of retirement plan services. The business unit provides customers an ‘outcome-based’ approach to retirement plans that provides guided retirement plan management designed to help credit unions with employee participation, satisfaction and retention. “Every facet of the plan, from initial plan design to investment lineups to communications, is designed to maximize retirement security for employees and peace of mind for sponsors,” Eckert added. Today, CUNA Mutual and its subsidiary CPI Qualified Plan Consultants Inc. service more than 7,500 plans and more than 500,000 retirement plan participants. CUNA Mutual also introduced in 1960 its first Group Salary Continuance Policy for credit union and league employees. It was the beginning of CUNA Mutual's Group Benefits Program, which grew to include Group Health, Group Life, Group Disability and Voluntary Benefits. More than 4,000 credit unions and more than 165,000 credit union employees participate in CUNA Mutual’s Group Benefits programs.

PCUA partners with mortgage loan company

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (9/16/10)--The Pennsylvania Credit Union Association (PCUA) has partnered with First Heritage Financial LLC in Philadelphia to help Pennsylvania credit unions provide mortgages to their members. First Heritage offers customizable mortgage programs for Pennsylvania credit unions of all asset sizes. The programs aim to help credit unions with an additional revenue stream so they can retain a first-mortgage relationship with their members. The company also can provide mortgage seminars for credit union members, said PCUA. First Heritage is a wholly owned credit union service organization of American Heritage FCU, Philadelphia. American Heritage has $939 in assets.

CUNA Mutual adds Esurance as car insurance carrier

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MADISON, Wis. (9/15/10)--CUNA Mutual Group is expanding its MEMBERS Auto and Homeowners insurance program by partnering with Esurance, a direct-to-consumer car insurance company whose mission is to make car insurance convenient and affordable. Current partner Liberty Mutual, which underwrites MEMBERS Auto and Homeowners insurance, is joined by Esurance as insurance carrier for the program, which is a core offering of CUNA Mutual’s MemberCONNECT program. For the past 12 years, MEMBERS Auto and Homeowners insurance has partnered with Liberty Mutual to serve more than 500,000 credit union member households. A subsidiary of the White Mountains Insurance Group Ltd., Esurance has more than 500,000 policyholders. The company launched its website, www.esurance.com, in 1999 and is now the third-most recognized brand among online consumers, according to Greenberg Brand Strategy. “As more consumers turn to the internet for their insurance needs, partnering with a company well known in the space that provides around-the-clock access to customer service and claims representatives makes sound business sense,” said Shad McKnight, vice president of Consumer Products. According to Esurance Vice President of Sales Tom Capp, “Esurance is uniquely positioned to help CUNA Mutual expand its insurance offerings to a broader range of tech-savvy members. We see this as a great opportunity to offer credit union members our ‘Best of Both Worlds’ approach to car insurance.” Esurance provides personal auto insurance direct to consumers online. Its customers can get instant car insurance quotes, view comparison quotes, buy a policy, and print their insurance cards--within minutes. Its policyholders also can make policy changes and file claims instantly online. For more information, use the resource link.

Grant writing topic of MBD Council paper

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MADISON, Wis. (9/15/10)--The grant application process can seem complex and confusing, but a new white paper from the CUNA Marketing & Business Development Council. The white paper, “Writing Grants Right: Extend Your Outreach--and Budget” demystifies the grant-writing process and offers practical recommendations on where to look for funding, how to cultivate relationships with grant-makers, and how to craft a winning application. It outlines the elements of a successful grant application, addresses what credit unions must do after they receive a grant, and provides pointers from foundation directors and credit union managers with grant experience. Resources for grant writers are also provided. The paper also offers sample projects that may be funded with grants--from designing an interactive “mini-credit union” at a hands-on museum for children, to expanding the bandwidth of a branch network, to offering low-rate loans for small businesses. Potential funders include government agencies and credit union and community foundations, many of which are willing to answer questions and walk organizations seeking funding through the grant application process, the paper said. “There are a lot of untapped grant dollars out there,” said Staci Zale, associate director of the Texas Credit Union Foundation. “If you are daunted by the grant application process, pick up the phone when you’re applying to a nonprofit organization or foundation for help. Most of them will be happy to walk you through their process.” For more information, use the link.

Joyent partners with Switch on cloud services

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SAN FRANCISCO (9/15/10)--Joyent, a global provider of smart computing solutions, announced that it has partnered with Switch to create the first public and hybrid cloud offering, the Switch SuperNAP in Las Vegas. The Switch SuperNAP is a 407,000 square foot facility and high-density, ultra-scale data center. Switch is a CUNA Strategic Service provider. The partnership will enable Joyent and Switch to meet the demands of high-sensitivity and data-heavy customers, including gaming and media companies, financial firms and government agencies. It also allows Joyent customers access to Switch|C.O.R.E., a multiple carrier telecommunications connectivity hub. It positions Joyent as a founding member of Switch|Cloud I.C.E., the U.S. Inter-Cloud Exchange, to allow a collection of private and public cloud vendors to co-exist and integrate seamlessly alongside the public cloud powered by Joyent Smart Technology. Cloud computing is Internet-based computing where shared resources and other information are provided to computers on demand. Customers will have the option of private and public hosting, and the ability to move data from one to the other, the companies said in a release.

Southeast Corporate to phase in single sign-on

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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (9/14/10)--Southeast Corporate FCU, Tallahassee, Fla., will phase in Single Sign-on for some of its web-based applications before the end of the year. Brad Miller, CEO, said in a recent memo to member credit unions that it hopes to have all applications tied to Single Sign-on by March 31. Single Sign-on allows authorized users to log in securely one time with one user ID and one password. The corporate decided to make the phase-in a priority after its credit unions sent comments to the corporate asking for the change.

CUNA Mutual sets free online Discovery Conference

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MADISON, Wis. (9/14/10)--CUNA Mutual Group’s first Online Discovery Conference is scheduled for Nov. 3. Online Discovery will offer the same presentations at the in-person conference over the web without the expenses of travel or time away from the office. The face-to-face Discovery Conference has drawn more than 3,000 participants. CUNA Mutual is providing the free online conference because of the company’s 75th anniversary. The online conference is estimated to be a $250 value, said CUNA Mutual. “We are bringing the quality of presenters and content from our face-to-face Discovery Conference online in an eight-hour event,” said Steve Johnson, vice president, marketing and sales strategy. “Discovery is online, on target and on budget for credit unions. Staff will be able to choose from three tracks of learning that will feature 11 future-focused sessions.” Registration opens Sept. 27. The event is designed for CEOs and senior credit union leaders, but all credit union and league employees are welcome, CUNA Mutual said.

CO-OP Ad Lab helps CUs market to members

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RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif. (9/13/10)--CO-OP Financial Services has enhanced CO-OP Ad Lab, a consumer marketing program for credit unions to help its clients promote the member access and convenience services they offer via CO-OP. CO-OP Ad Lab materials are available as statement inserts, flyers, brochures, Web banners and posters. The materials are free for member credit unions of CO-OP Financial Services to download and customize. The updated website, www.co-opfs.org/AdLab, features a new layout, easier navigation and 15 new marketing campaigns for credit unions, including those supporting mobile banking, scanning/depositing checks from home and surcharge-free access to ATMs. CO-OP Ad Lab now includes CO-OP Preferred, a turnkey marketing solution; and CO-OP Ad Partnership, a subsidy program for printing marketing materials. With CO-OP Preferred, CO-OP will customize the artwork, then fulfill orders, print and mail materials, and provide reporting. CO-OP will also offer special quarterly promotions. CO-OP Ad Partnership is a limited-time offer in which CO-OP will subsidize 50% of the printing costs for Ad Lab marketing materials, up to a $1,500 match per participating credit union annually. “Marketing departments at credit unions are very busy and often have limited resources in budget and personnel,” said Stan Hollen, president/CEO. “Co-OP Ad Lab makes it simple to promote everything from where to find a surcharge-free ATM, to promoting a member rewards program.”

MasterCard launches MoneySend for BlackBerry smartphones

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PURCHASE, N.Y. (9/10/10)--MasterCard announced that MoneySend is available for BlackBerry smartphones, so users can transfer money in the U.S. from person to person through financial institutions including credit unions. MoneySend, available for free download on BlackBerry App World, allows users to send or request money with their BlackBerry smartphones through participating credit unions and banks, or when they create a virtual prepaid account through Bancorp Bank. Users can link their debit or credit cards, or checking account to a prepaid account and send money through the smartphone. The account funds the transaction. Users can manage and trigger the exchanges through the application. Personal financial information is never stored on the BlackBerry, MasterCard said. MoneySend users can accept credit or debit card payments, send money to family members, pay for goods and services, request money from people who owe users and send a transaction history from a Blackberry. Jack Henry also has introduced a standalone version of iPay--TheWayiPay, which allows users the ability to send and receive money online. (SEE RELATED: Jack Henry announces TheWayiPay).

Jack Henry announces TheWayiPay

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MONETT, Mo. (9/10/10)--Jack Henry announced TheWayiPay, the standalone version of the iPay person-to-person (P2P) electronic payment solution, will be available in the fourth quarter. TheWayiPay allows anyone with a bank account to use that account to send and receive money. The service is accessible through credit unions’ and banks’ Web sites and leverages the same secure processing as online banking transactions. Payments can be made using only the recipient’s name and e-mail. The money is deducted from the sender’s account and deposited directly in the recipient’s account in one to three business days with payment confirmations sent to the recipient’s e-mail address. iPay’s P2P service is used by more than 2,150 financial institutions. It has supported more than 5.5 million person-to-person payments with more than 96,000 monthly transactions ranging from $1 to $10,000. Because of iPay’s acceptance in the financial industry, TheWayiPay is expected to generate significant interest, Jack Henry said. “We believe the speed and convenience of P2P transactions could fundamentally change the payments business,” said Bill Ready, president of iPay Technologies. About 60 million U.S. households will use P2P by 2014, according to Javelin Strategy and Research.

CO-OP offers pass-through processing

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RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif. (9/9/10)--CO-OP Financial Services is offering CO-OP Credit Pass-Through Processing, which credit unions can begin implementing in January. Pass-through credit processing, also known as internal credit processing, allows credit unions to maintain control and customization when servicing their clients. Pass-Through processing also is less expensive than a fully outsourced solution, CO-OP said. With CO-OP’s Pass-Through, the credit union carries credit card loan receivables and handles back room services, such as cardholder member servicing, statement generation, payment processing and collections. CO-OP will provide the switch between credit unions and MasterCard and Visa networks, exception processing disputes and authorization, scoring and fraud detection. Other benefits of Pass-Through include cost savings, a consolidated reporting platform, better member service and a single point of client contact for debit and credit, CO-OP said. CO-OP also plans to make CO-OP Credit Full-Service Processing available next year. CO-OP Financial Services, Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., provides more than 28,000 surcharge-free ATMs and 4,000 shared branch locations for credit unions.

WesCorp offers CU investment tool

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SAN DIMAS, Calif. (9/8/10)--Western Corporate FCU (WesCorp) is offering a new tool, Investment Ladder Template, so credit unions can graphically view and plot their investment maturities. The interactive Web-based tool aims to help credit unions maximize their earnings potential by helping them recognize the maturity gaps in their investment strategies and the amount of idle funds in their market daily account. The tool allows credit unions to plug in potential investments to determine how to best achieve maximum yield and consistent cash flow, WesCorp said. The template captures a credit union’s fixed-rate bullet investments’ maturities and then presents them in a timeline or “ladder” view. The credit union can then identify holes in its cash flow ladders. The tool is available only through WesCorp’s Member Center, but is exportable and can be shared with other non-member center users at the credit union. WesCorp, San Dimas, Calif., provides services to more than 950 credit unions nationwide.

Total Member Care proves popular

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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (9/7/10)--More than 270 credit unions use PSCU Financial Services’ Total Member Care Contact Centers. Fifty-four of those credit unions deploy the contact centers to obtain member opt-ins as required by Regulation E, which deals with overdraft services. Regulation E requires financial institutions, including credit unions, to obtain their members’ consent before charging them fees for overdraft services. The regulation was effective Aug. 15. In addition to opt-ins, 24 credit unions use the service for lending and new member enrollment, and 18 have the service for after-hours and overflow support. Contact centers are open 24 /7 and handle 17.4 million inquiries each year. Credit unions that outsource calls to the centers increase staff productivity, PSCU Financial Services said. Contact center staff handles account inquiries, balance transfers, password resets, loan applications, new member enrollment and account initiation. PSCU Financial Services is a credit union service organization in St. Petersburg, Fla.

Covera Card Solutions offers marketing materials sets

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ALBANY, N.Y. (9/7/10)--Covera Card Solutions, a subsidiary of the Credit Union Association of New York, is offering a marketing materials online ordering site. With the new tool, client credit unions can receive immediate pricing, order customized materials, view proofs and download or print pieces for ATM, credit, debit and FlexDebit campaigns. The site can be accessed through the Member Resource section of Covera’s website. The site was created by and is serviced through PBR Graphics, based in Albany, N.Y. “This new site makes the ordering process easier and more efficient,” said Kimberly McCumber Ploof, chief operating officer. Covera provides debit, credit and ATM programs to more than 300 credit unions.

ACUMA conference to help CUs seize mortgage share

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LAS VEGAS (9/3/10)--The American Credit Union Mortgage Association (ACUMA) will host a conference Sept. 15-18 in Las Vegas on mortgage lending. The conference also will be open to virtual attendees through a live telecast on the ACUMA website at a reduced rate. Conference speakers will tell credit unions what consumers’ needs are regarding mortgages and how credit unions can meet those needs. Speakers include: Jim Gillespie, Coldwell Banker Real Estate Corp. president/CEO; Larry Platt, K&L Gates practice leader; Ann Clurman, The Futures Co. executive vice president; and Tom Millon, Capital Markets Cooperative president/CEO. Sessions will cover:
* The state of capital markets, including government and conventional loans; * The state of the mortgage and real estate brokerage market; * Adoption of new secondary market strategies; * Compliance with new regulations, including the Secure and Fair Enforcement Act; * Effective loss-mitigation strategies; and * Emerging trends in generational marketing, social media and technology.
Credit unions had a record $90 billion in mortgage loans outstanding in 2009, and the numbers will likely grow, according to ACUMA. “In the consumer space, credit unions are the best-kept secret,” said Bob Dorsa, ACUMA president.

SE Corporate creates HELOCwire fraud role-playing resources

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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (9/2/10)--Southeast Corporate’s member services team has created a series of fraud prevention role-playing scenarios to help member credit unions prevent fraud. The scenarios use real-life credit union situations and demonstrate some methods criminals use for fraudulent account access, and how it can lead to Home Equity Lines of Credit (HELOC)/wire fraud. The corporate also built a Fraud Resource Area with tip sheets on fraud, links to prevention resources, news stories and a repository of all recent fraud alerts. “We asked our members if they would use such a resource, and they jumped at the opportunity,” said Steve Wildes, Southeast member services manager.