Security processes should not compromise customer service

Posted on: February 27th, 2013 by Art Barger

For financial organizations that provide a service, what is it that keeps customers coming back? Since a product is not the competitive differentiator, is it speed? Convenience? Exceptional customer service? How about customer trust and confidence? And where does security factor in? For financial institutions, the answer to these questions could very well be all of the above.

With banks working overtime to safeguard their many customer channels, the one thing they want to make sure their security processes don’t do is interrupt their ability to deliver excellent customer service. Any disruption to the customer experience can have an impact on their ability to retain existing customers and win ones.

Today’s smarter, savvier banking customers expect more from financial institutions. They’ve become less tolerant when a bank falls short of meeting their high expectations. In fact, the 2012 U.S. Bank Customer Switching and Acquisition Study by J.D. Power and Associates found that year-over-year more customers are switching banks as a result of fees, poor service and unmet expectations.

While security can plan a key role in building customer confidence and loyalty, on the flip side, it can also have a negative impact if handled the wrong way. Take, for example, knowledge-based authentication (KBA). Once the standard for identifying banking customers over the telephone, KBA alone is no longer predictive for customer authentication. What can be equally as damaging is how a barrage of security questions interrupt the customer experience to the point that banks lose their customers’ trust and goodwill, and ultimately their business altogether.

Unlike KBA and other personally identifiable information (PII) security methods, which interrogate customers over the telephone, the TRUSTID® Physical Caller Authentication solution helps secure the telephone channel without call center agents saying a single word. By non-intrusively validating the Caller ID and ANI before the call is answered, TRUSTID doesn’t intervene in the customer experience at all. By automatically validating good customers before their call is answered, bank representatives can provide immediate customers service at the onset of each call. Immediately addressing customers’ needs leave them feeling respected and creates a senses of loyalty that they got what they needed, when they needed it, all in a timely manner.

In today’s remote banking environment, it’s no longer good enough to simply keep fraud or unwanted activity in check — fraud has to be contained without damaging the larger, broader relationship between banks and their customers. Establishing this not only creates a competitive differentiator, but allows financial institutions to open up new revenue opportunities with both existing customers and future customers.