As anyone who has a banking or payroll account, a credit or debit card or uses virtually any other banking or financial services knows, banks are going online in droves. Try going to the local bank branch office that you used last week and you may find that it is closed. Gone online. Moved to cyberspace. Internet banking is becoming a fact of life for an increasing number of people.
Scotiabank untethers online banking
Opinions may be divided about online banking, but Internet banking is definitely here to stay. Forced by an increasingly competitive banking industry to provide the best service at the lowest cost, many banks are finding Internet banking to be an attractive alternative to brick-and-mortar offices where providing personal service carries considerable overhead. As usual, customers are voting with their feet, and many banks that have opened up shop in cyberspace are finding that they are attracting new customers. In addition to lowering the cost of financial services, many customers are attracted by the convenience of doing their banking from home on their PCs and being able to access a full range of banking services around the clock.
Where does this leave the road warrior? While more convenient for some, online banking threatens to leave others in the lurch. How does a mobile professional facing an unexpected expense while on a business trip transfer funds from a savings to a checking account? Can she check her credit card balance from an airport lounge? Until now, these tasks, so easily accomplished via an online banking service, were impossible without access to an ATM or a fixed connection.
Banking in the palm of your hand
Now, Canada's Scotiabank has joined with Mobitex operator Rogers AT&T Wireless to provide a solution. Using the Rogers AT&T Wireless Interactive Messaging Device, they are offering Canadians anytime, anywhere access to their financial information right in the palm of their hand. Under the recently signed agreement, Scotiabank's customers will be able to access banking and discount brokerage information using the Mobitex network.
"Scotiabank has always played a leading role in Canadian banking, providing customers with a variety of choices so that they can do their banking and discount brokerage business when and where it is convenient," says Albert Wahbe, executive vice president, Electronic Banking at Scotiabank. "With the addition of the Rogers AT&T Wireless Interactive Messaging service, we are offering our customers the ultimate in financial services convenience, a range of banking and discount brokerage information at their fingertips."
The agreement between Rogers AT&T Wireless and Scotiabank will enable the bank's customers to receive financial information, including bank account and credit card balances and statements, stock quotes and portfolio information on their Rogers AT&T Wireless Interactive Messaging device. Using the highly secure Mobitex network, as well as an additional level of encryption, the Rogers AT&T Wireless Interactive Messaging device is the ideal solution for the delivery of this sensitive and timely information.
This new service is unique in the personal banking industry and still in its infancy. It does not yet offer a full range of services which would include funds transfer. However Scotiabank has taken a giant first step in untethering online banking services and coming to the road warrior's rescue.
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