Shared Branching Network Adds New Tools

Xtend, Inc. a multi-owned cooperative CUSO based in Grand Rapids, Michigan, announced that the ninety-four (94) credit unions in its shared branching network have recently implemented new member authentication procedures in an effort to further protect privacy when their members perform transactions at partner branches.

The new procedures leverage the data masking and security control functionality native to the CU*BASE data procession suite from CU*Answers, Inc., which serves as the foundation for the Xtend Shared Branching network.  The changes were recommended by the CUSO’s Shared Branching Advisory Council (SBAC), a group made up of representatives from participating credit unions that serves as the governing body for the self-managed network.

Chris Cross of Grand Rapids, Michigan-based AAC Credit Union and Chair of the SBAC says, “The council and Xtend staff utilized a variety of communication channels, including webinars, Emails, and meetings, to help prepare credit union staffs for these procedural change, and we believe that the network has taken an important step forward regarding member privacy.  Members requesting service at a shared branch now need to know their account number, and since keeping privacy controls in the hands of the home credit union has been the hallmark of our network, each individual credit union in the network can optionally require their members to answer additional out-of-wallet questions before being served at remote locations.”

Julie Gessner, Xtend’s Manager of Communication Services and liaison to the SBAC, also noted, “The council felt that the established procedures did not do enough to leverage the integrated data masking and authentication features within CU*BASE, but also wanted each credit union to continue to control how their members were served within the network.  I believe the newly adopted procedures will do both.”

The Xtend Shared Branching network now includes over two hundred (200) branch locations in ten (10) states.