Slideshow CUs' biggest challenges and opportunities in the payments space

Published
  • April 11 2017, 2:18pm EDT
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Challenge accepted!

At PSCU’s Member Forum 2017, held last week in Palm Desert, Calif., Credit Union Journal asked attendees to spotlight the biggest challenges and/or opportunities in the payments space.

CU Journal's other coverage of the event can be found here and here.

Erik Sordahl, VP of consumer lending, Schools Financial CU, Sacramento, Calif.

One challenge we have came up after we converted to EMV. Going into the conversion it was our understanding that if our member has an EMV card and uses it at an EMV terminal, we are not liable for any fraud. We soon learned about “fallback transactions.” This applies to people who dip their EMV card and it does not work for some reason, so the clerk tells them to swipe instead. When you do that, the liability goes back to the issuer. Some fraudsters are using this to their advantage. They cannot counterfeit the chip, but they can counterfeit the mag stripe, so they pretend to use the chip but then go on to swipe. We could go completely conservative and not allow any EMV card to be used by swipe, but then that risks member impact. Not all merchant EMV terminals are set up correctly, or sometimes the chip in the card is damaged. We have tried to find a middle ground. If we can drill down in the data, we can decline fallback transactions that are taking place at a specific merchant, such as at a particular Walmart, rather than at all Walmarts. Related to this, we are working to spot members who are doing fallback transactions over and over due to a damaged chip, meaning we are liable for those transactions. We get them a new card.

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Oma George, SVP and chief retail officer, Andrews FCU, Suitland, Md.

The biggest challenge is fraud. We are looking for more sophisticated ways to examine what is going on and catch bad transactions. PSCU does a good job of examining patterns and putting blocks in place when they see something out of pattern. An opportunity we see is the seamless integration of all delivery channels.

Amy Rust, debit card manager, Wings FCU, Apple Valley, Minn.

The challenge for us is any time we make one little change to the card program, even if we test like crazy, there is always something – some little issue – that comes up. Something that is not in the script for the front line people to use. So we have to run around and update the scripts. Another challenge is card activation. We used to have members activate their debit cards at the ATM, but we switched to having them call a toll-free number. However, when we did that, some of our active cards went to non-active. These issues show you can never troubleshoot enough.

Delynn Byars, SVP of marketing, First South Financial CU, Bartlett, Tenn.

Along with a number of credit unions, we are challenged to remove friction from payments. All of us need to realize the concept of “payments” is going to go beyond cards. Really, “cards” and “accounts” are being taken out of the main way to pay. Credit unions need to take the lead and have those solutions in place when the member wants them. Or hopefully just before the member wants them.

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Angie Retherford, VP of payments, Listerhill CU, Muscle Shoals, Ala.

Our challenge is measuring success in the payments department. We have to find something to measure so we can reward our staff and let them know they are doing a good job. One possible solution is we are going to work with our inactive cards to boost our activity.

Jaime Stainbrook, president and CEO, Bar-Cons FCU, Columbus, Ind.

We moved to PSCU 3 years ago. They have helped us get our credit and debit cards in the hands of more members. People want to use their cards for payments. PSCU has helped us issue chip cards and they also watch our cards for fraud so we don’t have to worry about it.

Brandon Ivie, CEO, Kern FCU, Bakersfield, Calif.

Our challenge is getting people to use our card – to be top of wallet. We are doing traditional advertising: television, radio and newspapers. We have tried participating in all the wallets, hoping to attract interest from millennials, but that is not really working. Right now, we are looking to improve our interoperability between our cards and mobile banking. We see an opportunity to reach out to Spanish-speaking populations by adding an option for Spanish.