Current News

Study looks at Millennials’ leading behaviors and attitudes, presents insights and suggestions for community banks
posted September 3, 2015

An October 2014 paper—2014 ICBA American Millennials and Banking Study—details surprising findings from a nationwide study by the Independent Community Bankers of America® and The Center for Generational Kinetics LLC. The survey results indicate, among other things, that as a group, Millennials are driven by entrepreneurial ambitions and eager for financial education.

The paper, which is accessible online to ICBA members, summarizes the study results. Further, it lays out strategies and action steps for community banks seeking to engage and serve Millennials. To download the paper, visit the Press Room at Log in and click on News Releases. (The study was released October 15, 2014.)

Next complimentary training on BIDS to focus on security, with security administrators in mind
posted August 18, 2015

To support BIDS banks in leveraging every aspect of the powerful system to its greatest potential, Bankers’ Bank of the West has scheduled third-quarter presentations on BIDS capabilities for its customers. The emphasis of the third-quarter webinars, to be held in September, is security.

This round of complimentary training is targeted toward BIDS administrators for community banks utilizing either BIDS or BIDS limited, though several employees from your bank are welcome to participate from a single connection. The sessions will be led by Mary Brown, Vice President–Cash Management Services, Bankers’ Bank of the West. Among other things, the trainings will address the completion of forms including those for telephone authorization, reports and dual authorization; discuss differences between permissions involving daily aggregate limits versus daily limit by transaction type; review biometrics; and cover questions submitted in advance by users taking part in the webinars.

To receive sign-up information and instructions on how to submit your BIDS security questions in advance, email

Resources for stemming of financial abuse of elders
posted August 17, 2015

As the older population in the U.S. continues to grow, so too have attempts to prey on the elderly. Efforts to inform the public of this reality as well as the tactics commonly used by would-be predators have been stepped up in recent years.

Many state and local government agencies have joined forces with nonprofit and advocacy groups to prevent financial crimes and assist victims. In addition, some states have enacted laws requiring people in designated professions to report suspected abuse or neglect of elders. Those mandates vary significantly from state to state.

Community bankers, in their role as trusted financial advisors, would be well-advised to determine whether any reporting requirements that pertain to them. Even if no requirements apply, you could proactively identify many effective no-cost sources of information that could someday prove helpful to your employees and your customers.

A good place to start is your state attorney general’s website or your local district attorney’s office. The National Center on Elder Abuse Administration on Aging website contains an interactive map that provides centralized access to state-specific catalogs on the prevention of elder abuse.

Elsewhere on the same site is a library of publications on many subtopics relating to the senior population—including financial abuse and durable power of attorney. There’s even an index of podcasts and webinars.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau website enables the downloading of easy-to-read printable booklets for people entrusted with managing others’ money. If you’d like to keep a supply of any of these “financial caregiver” booklets on hand at the bank, you can use a link on the same page to order free print copies.

Think “KISS principle” to maintain your intelligence edge
Bankers’ Bank of the West posting – June 26, 2015

Technology goes a long way toward helping your bank operate efficiently and safely. But well-trained, alert employees are equally fundamental to your security and success. Do they know what Same Day ACH will mean for your bank? Have they learned about ACH risk factors—and how to mitigate risk? What do they know about check fraud?

Bankers’ Bank of the West and WesPay are helping you empower your staff with job-specific education that’s convenient and affordable. Below are the remaining 2015 course dates and topics for the WesPay-led webinar sessions scheduled exclusively for BBW account holders:

Tuesday,   July 7 ACH   Operations RDFI
Tuesday,   August 25 Same Day ACH Implementation (NEW!)
Wednesday,   September 2 ACH   Risk for RDFIs
Monday,   October 5 ACH   Risk for ODFIs
Thursday,   November 5 Vendor   Management—Part 1
Tuesday,   November 10 Vendor   Management—Part 2
Tuesday,   December 8 Check   Fraud Risk and Mitigation

All classes start at 1 pm Mountain time. Pricing for these sessions is significantly lower than for other programs of similar length. To receive the pricing and registration form, email your request to

First sessions in a series of complimentary BIDS presentations attract a large audience
April 2, 2015

As part of its educational outreach efforts, Bankers’ Bank of the West led nine complimentary web-based presentations for BIDS users over a two-week period, drawing 130 registrants from 43 banks. Those sessions touched on the functional capabilities of the system at a high level.

The hour-long presentations were conducted by BBW Vice President-Cash Management Services Mary Brown.

“We kicked off this series with a thorough overview because BIDS is a powerful tool that regularly evolves to meet users’ needs and adapt to the environment,” Mary said. “It made sense to cover the basics in the first group of webinars. And now our customers are helping us work out what to focus on next quarter.”

Congratulations and thank you to all who took part the recent webinars. BBW’s BIDS users are invited to send feedback on the first presentations or suggest BIDS-related topics for future courses: email

Defend your bank against hackers: Verify your originators
March 17, 2015

A number of banks are reporting that their customers’ emails have been hacked. Hacking can trigger a chain of events aimed at defrauding financial institutions. The most effective precaution your bank can take is to completely and consistently follow best practices. The following story illustrates why.

Bank XYZ receives an email that appears to be from its good customer. The email instructs the bank to wire funds to a beneficiary in a foreign country. An employee at Bank XYZ, relying on the email alone for authorization, wires the funds according to the instructions in the email.

What went wrong in this example? The good customer’s email had been hacked. The emailed wire request was sent by a fraudster in a distant country, and the funds are long gone by now.

And because the employee at Bank XYZ failed to call the customer to confirm the originator’s identity, it’s Bank XYZ that suffered the loss.

Unfortunately, U.S. financial institutions have incurred large financial losses as a result of this type of fraud. We urge you stress the importance of always making a call-back to your customer to verify any faxed or emailed wire transfer request before releasing payment. Whether your bank uses passwords or PINs to verify the identity of customers, following this step without exception will help safeguard both your customer and your bank.