Isn’t it time to let call center agents do their job?

Posted on: October 02nd, 2014 by Art Barger

You’ve invested time, money and resources training your call center agents to greet customers and resolve whatever issues they called about. So let them.

What often stands in the way of excellent customer service are mundane processes that don’t allow your telephone reps to get to work. Instead, they are required to conduct thorough phone interrogations that have nothing to do with the customer’s problem. The truth is, just about all knowledge-based authentication (KBA) security questions do these days is complicate the customer experience by pushing the limits of your good customers’ trust and goodwill.

So why do banks continue to deploy authentication processes that undermine their ability to provide better customer service? You got me. Relying on your contact center agents to drill customers about their sensitive data impacts your customer experience on multiple levels:

1. The bank-customer relationship: In the eyes of customers, challenge questions appear to supersede their own issues. While banks are attempting to secure their telephone environments, making customers feel second fiddle never sits well with customers.

2. Call center expenses: We all know that operational efficiency is a key part of providing exceptional customer service and managing overall costs. But when contact center agents are required to read scripts that interrupt customer interactions, it increases the length of calls and drives up operating expenses.

3. Telephone security: Relying on KBA today can expose your customers’ accounts and confidential business information to identity theft, fraud and account takeovers. One of the most effective weapons for social engineering is sensitive customer data. Using KBA not only puts your bank at risk, but it’s no longer predictive for identifying customers over the telephone channel.

Call centers have said that once fraudsters identify the most gullible and accommodating call center agents, they repeatedly perpetrate their social engineering tactics on the same agents. They’re experts at exploiting call center weaknesses. Knowing this, when it comes to customer authentication why don’t banks simply take telephone representatives out of the process? Doing so would help reduce social engineering scams and help improve customer service.

The TRUSTID® Physical Caller Authentication solution uses advanced telephone forensics to proactively authenticate inbound calls before they reach a live person. This allows call centers to determine in real-time if the caller poses a risk or not. It also confirms the authenticity of each call, so only validated good callers are routed through the phone system.

When bad calls are removed from the system and agents know they are talking to only good customers, they can get back to what they were trained to do — provide excellent customer service.