Why Customer-Centric Encryption Matters in Financial Services

customer centric encryption

Why Customer-Centric Encryption Matters in Financial Services

Before message encryption became mainstream with its incorporation into popular messaging platforms, like WhatsApp, and into deep-reaching, headline-grabbing international privacy regulations, like the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the financial services industry could usually get away with using overly-complex data security options which were not user friendly. Customers simply didn’t know protecting their data could be seamless and practically invisible.

They know it now and expect customer-centric encryption solutions—especially from the financial services organizations that secure their most sensitive data.

Financial services firms shouldn’t need to choose between security and customer experience. If you look at encryption specs, you’ll notice that algorithms aren’t the primary differentiators of any secure email solution. Almost all contemporary security products feature 2048-bit RSA encryption, 256-bit AES encryption and SHA2 signatures.

The real differentiator is customer experience—how easy is it for customers and employees to use the encryption solution? And do they get the awesome customer experience they’ve come to expect?

Five ways encryption can secure customer-centric innovation

The customer experience differentiators that enterprise-level financial services organizations should look for in an encryption solution include:

  • Definable policies to control which communications require encryption and how they are sent.
  • Multiple flexible delivery methods for different types of secure encrypted communications.
  • Easy and frictionless user experience for employees and customers, no matter how tech-savvy they are (or aren’t).
  • Multiple brand and language options to support brand alignment and customer expectations and to give customers the peace of mind that comes with receiving secure messages from a trusted source.
  • Dedicated account support to help organizations understand how email encryption fits into their business model.

Customer experience is so important because it directly relates to trust—the new currency in banking. Your clients need to trust you with their most personal data and—like it or not—clunky user experiences erode their faith in your ability to protect their data. And when clients lose faith and no longer trust your brand, they will leave. A recent Echoworx survey found that 80 per cent of customers consider leaving a brand after a data breach. With so many CEOs concerned about company reputation, it doesn’t make sense to settle for an encryption solution that can’t support an awesome customer experience—the risk to the brand is just too high.

In addition to benefitting your customer-centric business model, there are added monetary benefits to adopting a flexible frictionless encryption solution. A recent Forrester Total Economic Impact™ study, for example, revealed that a typical enterprise-level organization can slash $2.7M off their bottom line through employing our flexible OneWorld encryption solution.

Get the full Forrester Total Economic Impact™ study of OneWorld here.

Achieving both regulatory compliance and customer-centricity

Like all companies, financial services organizations are subject to privacy regulations like the GDPR. But that’s the tip of the iceberg—and being non-compliant with these privacy laws comes with stiff sharp-toothed penalties.

Regulations financial services companies are subject to[1] or should be aware of include[2]:

  • FINRA guidelines
  • Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (GLBA)
  • SEC 17A-3 and 17A-4
  • Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS)
  • Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP)
  • Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX)
  • EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
  • Canadian Securities Administrators National Instrument 31-303 (CSA NI)
  • Investment Dealers Association of Canada (IDA29.7)
  • Model Requirements for the Management of Electronic Records (MOREQ)
  • California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA)
  • New York Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) Cybersecurity Regulation

Since compliance is so integral to the financial services industry, it’s in your organization’s best interest to choose an encryption solution that has privacy by design; this means your secure email platform figures out how to send messages based on the policies you define during your initial service customization. For example, a business partner receives transparent encryption via TLS, a customer receives a monthly statement as a secure PDF attachment and a European bank may require PGP emails because employees have PGP software running on their desktops.

What customer-centric encryption means to your bottom line

In financial services, providing a frictionless and secure customer experience isn’t optional for seamless secure communication. But there are additional monetary benefits to choosing and implementing the right flexible encryption solution. For example, a recent Total Economic Impact™ (TEI) study conducted by Forrester suggests that typical enterprise-level organizations employing Echoworx’s OneWorld encryption platform can slash nearly $320K off their bottom line with the adoption of self-service support options, like automatic password resets – increasing call centre productivity and removing the need for additional overhead.

Customer-centric encryption helps financial services organizations build and keep trust with clients, stay compliant and reduce costs. Isn’t it time to take advantage of this proven competitive differentiator?

The Echoworx Difference

At Echoworx, encryption is all we do. Our OneWorld encryption platform is a natural extension for most existing systems and offers a wide range of flexible, adaptable and dependable encryption delivery methods for use at enterprise-level corporations.

Learn more about the ROI of Echoworx OneWorld encryption here.

By: Christian Peel, VP Engineering at Echoworx

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[1] https://www.echoworx.com/project/encryption-technologies-financial-services/

[2] https://www2.deloitte.com/us/en/pages/regulatory/articles/banking-regulatory-outlook.html