January 27, 2023

Banks and other financial institutions especially Financial Technology Companies (FinTechs) are taking advantage of the rising use of mobile apps by their tech-savvy customers by deploying customised and efficient channels. Many prospective customers of banks are now attracted to the banking sector by the benefits and ease with which banking services are deployed through new apps tailored to customers’ needs. But sustaining demand and usage of mobile apps, banks and other financial services providers need to ensure that their platforms are secured to guarantee continued customers’ confidence and patronage, writes Assistant Business Editor COLLINS NWEZE.

Mobile Apps are making huge inroads into the financial services sector bringing flexibility, safety and convenience to users.

The deepening integration of digital technologies into almost every facet of people’s lives has transformed the way they communicate, socialise, learn, do business and conduct financial transactions.

Hence, banks are not only competing for the mobile Apps space, but launching new ones targeted at enhancing the banking experience of large pool of their customer base and bringing services closer to the people.

Banking apps are not only retaining users with push and in-app notifications but are attracting prospective users who want                 improved banking experience and better security of transactions.

The Central Bank of Nigeria Deputy Governor Financial System Stability, Mrs. Aishah Ahmad, said the challenge of banking product security and abuse is impacting the adoption of products.

Speaking at the Financial Institutions Training Centre/Nigeria Interbank Settlement System Virtual Think_Nnovation Conference held in Lagos, she explained that if people find out that digital channels are getting more secured and that there are opportunities they can leverage when they have challenges, there are more chances that they will embrace the channels. But if they discover that the security of the platforms are reducing, this can lead to reduction in the use and adoption of digital services.

Ecobank Nigeria says its Omni Lite App  is a highly secure and integrated electronic banking platform designed to help clients manage their business accounts online in a secure, flexible, efficient and convenient manner.

The App is in line with Ecobank’s policy direction to meet and surpass customers’ expectations, noting that it will bring flexibility, safer and convenient banking to the users. It is available to existing Omni Lite users, urging them to download it from the Apple Store (IOS) or the Play Store (Android).

“With the new Omni Lite App, users can view their accounts and transactions in one place, make payments and pay bills with ease, set up multiple users with different access launch, make and manage loan payment, book time deposits and view exchange rates,” the bank said.

Coronation Merchant Bank has launched a mobile banking application. The app  provides customers with access to their accounts as well as the ability to perform transactions seamlessly without the need for in-person banking. The bank said mobile App is helping customers navigate the challenges induced by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Analysts said banks are already serving between 70 to 80  per cent of its customers through mobile App and other digital platforms.

They said the COVID-19 pandemic has given the bank an opportunity to test the resilience of its investment in technology.

But analysts have said that financial services sector is particularly susceptible to cybercrime given its crucial role of financial intermediation in a highly connected financial system. Aside significant financial losses, the sector is also exposed to potential compromise and loss of customer data, and disruption of operations, which undermine app users’ confidence in financial system stability and which financial services operators are trying to address.

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