How to Cash In on the Financial Institutions Vertical
Unlock secrets to bank market success with these insights from industry experts.
Eric Yunag, vice president, strategic initiatives, for Convergint Technologies, brought a rich history of financial institution protection know-how when the Schaumburg, Ill.-headquartered integrator acquired Yunag’s Dakota Security Systems last year.
SSI tapped into Yunag’s wisdom, as well as that of analytics provider Verint Systems, to see what the market holds for security professionals looking to cash in.
Yunag, who was president and CEO of Dakota Security, says the company’s coverage and capabilities included physical and electronic security; safe deposit boxes and under-counter steel enclosures; night-drop and drive-up equipment; bullet-resistant windows; plus traditional alarm, intrusion, access control and surveillance.
He adds that they often install two-way audio for the drive-up windows, and capabilities even extend these days to digital signage for retail advertising in lobbies and drive-up lanes.
One area of recent success that takes advantage of today’s electronic and wireless communication technologies is in lock management, which Yunag likens to access control management.
Financial institutions can manage who is going in and out of any locked room, night drop, cash vault, safe, teller area and more, with benefits such as managing schedules and controlling access permissions in a fully documented manner.
“One of the major elements that’s changing right now on the traditional lock side is really the evolution in lock technology. Traditionally banks are very key heavy in a lot of ways, they have lots of dual control issues, regulatory mandates and control over them,” Yunag explains. “A lot of the lock technology innovation is now allowing dual control and audit history on electronic locks for what is many different enclosures inside a financial location. That’s bringing a lot of value to a lot of our financial customers these days.”
He adds that the vertical traditionally has high turnover, so management of keys had been an issue in the past but now can be managed and audited electronically.
Yunag notes that security integrators should understand the particular needs of the financial institution market, which involve protecting precious assets and operating within regulatory and compliance mandates.
“Any way we can deploy technology to assist them in those things, they’re very much interested in hearing a business case to invest in that technology,” says Yunag. “The dual control issue on containers is one that’s very prevalent; another is simply investigations.”
Toward that end, video surveillance cameras and video management systems advancements and the ability to integrate the solutions is a must for security professionals seeking banks’ business.
Evolution in surveillance technology enables integrators to deliver high value by linking transaction software for ATMs and teller lines with backend video data to search for check fraud, ATM skimming, employee fraud and more, Yunag cites as an example.
“At the core processing level, the ability to integrate at a very deep level and run very useful data into the video make it much more actionable,” he says. “Technology that can bring any manner of savings or efficiencies to their operations is always good in that kind of environment.”
Speaking of actionable technology and business efficiencies, Verint Systems offers solutions that power “actionable intelligence,” a phrase it’s trademarked for its business that has “a focus on customer engagement optimization, security intelligence, and fraud, risk and compliance.”
The Melville, N.Y.-based company works with integrator partners (as well as its own direct sales team) to enhance the value of data collection and technology integration so financial institution customers can do more with it to fuel everyday operations.
Working with bank customers, particularly larger regional and national players, likely means designing systems that extend beyond the branches to the corporate offices.
“There’s an enormous amount of disparate technology within our industry and the banking market has not been immune, so the goal should be around how you can collect more data and bring it into a single application. Capture the whole enchilada, all the way down starting with a camera and working in the rest of your portfolio. All of a sudden you expand your audience inside of a financial institution,” says Verint’s Matt Tengwall, vice president/general manager, security and cyber solutions, banking and retail markets. “You don’t just add value anymore to a director of security; you’re now adding value down the hallway to the director of fraud or even potentially operations or retail branch banking.”
Tengwall says that depending on the size of the end user, an integrator might be dealing with a specific head of technology as the point of contact or, at smaller customers, someone who wears many hats. For the latter, those people might rely more heavily upon the integrator’s insights into cutting-edge solutions.
“A lot of people can say if equipment’s working or not working from an elementary perspective, but how can we get a little deeper and understand how the system’s being used,” Tengwall says.
Of course, grabbing that data means entering cyber territory too, and the inherent concerns there, but Tengwall says customers appreciate that security manufacturers understand their role on the network and don’t want to be the gateway in, so that conversation is covered as well.
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