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Call-center and IVR in financial sectors

Banks and other financial institutions need call-center and IVR software to deal with various customer queries. Generally, the IVR software solves the smaller customer queries, and call-center handles complex queries. IVR stands for Interactive Voice Response. It helps financial institutions to interact with callers. The use of interactive voice response decreases the cost involved in services, collections, standard sales, and inquiry. With IVR supporting the calls to and from multiple companies, the issue of cybersecurity is rising. The banks and other financial institutions need to have an idea on the measures to be taken to prevent security breaches or cyberattacks.

The IVR provides the up-to-date customer account information instantly and easily without speaking directly to a person, as the IVR has some level of access to the Banks data. Sometimes the IVR services can also be used to conduct a survey. With IVR, the users can interact with the database, enter data, or acquire information.

Financial institutions and banks get an enormous number of calls from customers. The cloud telephony solutions help financial institutions and banks to set up and run their call centers. Most of the banking call centers use cloud-hosted interactive voice response (IVR). Cybersecurity is the primary concern of every financial institution and banks. Several rules and regulations are followed by FINSEC organizations and banks to safeguard and maintain the security posture while installing said services.

The planned calling campaigns with cloud telephony services help call centers to improve customer satisfaction, promote customer loyalty, and boost agent productivity along with curtailing and increasing operational costs and revenues respectively. The call centers and IVR faces several risks, such as reputational risks, security risks, operational risks, compliance-related risks, and financial risks. The threats keep changing from time to time. Various strategies are introduced by the banks and financial institutions to tackle the security attacks in call centers and IVR.

Working of interactive voice response (IVR)

IVR consist of software applications, telephony equipment, support infrastructure, and a database. The IVR software needs to be installed within the financial institution’s and bank’s infrastructure. Once the customers call the banks or financial institutions, the IVR greats them with pre-recorded greeting messages, and allows customers to select an option from the menu configured for various services/queries. The particular piece of hardware named Telephony Board or Telephony Card, helps interactive voice response and call centers to work.

Some of the requirements of Interactive Voice Response (IVR):

VXML telephony server: The Voice XML servers are the individual servers that help IVR by acting as an interface between the internal network and phone.

TCP/IP network: TCP/IP networks provide the internet or internet connectivity in IVR services used in banks and other financial institutions.

Web application servers: the IVR servers found in the banks or other financial institutions help the IVR to store the data regarding customer support. The IVR consists of multiple applications that perform various functions like this.

Database: the real-time IVR and call center information are stored in the database of IVR applications.

IVR technologies that provide modern IVR experience for banking users are:

Prediction of caller intent

The IVR predicts the intention of the callers based on their recent transactions and gives them the appropriate menu options by eliminating the irregular menu options.

Providing context continuity

The customer context is saved or preserved across the channels, so the customer does not need to repeat the information.

Provide the pre-recorded notifications or call the customer

The customer is called with the pre-recorded information or reminder so that the banking users can VXML telephony server know their payment reminders, appointment confirmations, or outage notification. The IVR allows banking users to make changes without the help of any middle man or agents.

Visual interactive voice response (IVR)

The IVR needs to be easier to navigate and more comfortable for the customer to use, the visualizations or the user interface of the INR allows the users to enter their information quicker than the traditional IVRs. The visual IVR provides deep or long IVCR menus to the customers.

Provides the Queue self-service

The caller or the banking users are provided with the self-service options while waiting. The customers have the opportunity to call back at a later time. The self-service systems in INR reduce the cost of banking sectors.

Measures to reduce the security attacks on the IVR or call centers

It is essential for every bank and financial institution to train their call center and IVR support staffs and help them to recognize and prevent fraud. The human elements make the call center and IVR more attractive to cybercriminals. So, it is crucial to ensure the safety of banks and other financial institutions. The banking staff needs to be educated about the various social engineering cybersecurity attacks.

The biometric technologies help the users to track or detect the altered voices, or that can compare the customer’s voice from the database. The detection services need to installed in IVR and call centers to reduce the fraud or scams. The authentication techniques help the users to validate the mobile number of the customers and locate their physical location.

The policies and the system-related limitations of call centers and IVR needs to be understood. The real-time do’s and don’ts of the call centers and IVR are mentioned to the banking users.

The card information should be masked, and other track information hidden for the customer service professional in order to prevent such sensitive information from getting leaked.

The Call Centre ops should not have direct access to the back-office channels, PCI infra and SWIFT infra.

The banking customer PIN validations help the IVR to avoid misuse of the system by attackers. The customers need to validate the secret key or any other factors similar to that of real customers.

The banks need to provide the two-factor authentication to the IVR or call centers. The customers need to prove themselves to the banks to ensure that they are having access to the account.

The new address of the customer’s needs to be validated. Before sending any new cards to that address. The cybercriminals sometimes mimic as customers and claim losing their cards and demand for new credit cards.

In order to ensure a secure posture and seamless functioning of the call center ops, NetSentries provides a thorough assessment service through its inbred Assess Declare Validate & Respond (ADVR) framework. This assessment assures 360-degree security starting with the posture assessment, covering all the elements including control validation and cyber SOC response strategies with the objective to provide a complete picture of the gaps, remediation assistance and continuous security monitoring.

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