Fintech, Finance, Technology, Banking Highlights – 10 April 2018

NatWest to offer personalised video messages on completion of a mortgage

NatWest is first UK bank to explain unique customer rates and payments in simple personalised video. Homes Under the Hammer presenter Lucy Alexander fronts new personalised video messages for NatWest mortgage customers.

On completion of a NatWest mortgage, a customer will receive a link to a personalised video message featuring their rate, monthly repayments, the date payment is due and information on their mortgage term. The personalised message uses the latest technology to present information personalised to each customer.

The video also highlights NatWest’s Mortgage Self Service which enables customers to keep track of their mortgage online.

Click here to view an example of a personalised video message, developed by NatWest in partnership with VideoSmart.

Ian McLaughlin, Managing Director, Home Buying and Ownership at NatWest said on the launch of the new video service:

“We want to ensure our customers are clear about the key features of their specific mortgage when they buy or refinance their home with us. Our new personalised video offers a fun and innovative way to achieve that, whilst at the same time thanking customers for choosing us.’

ABN Amro and Dutch authorities join forces to fight helpdesk scams

ABN Amro has joined forces with the Dutch authorities and eleven private parties to combat helpdesk scams. The parties involved have signed a declaration of intent, in which each party agrees to contribute its own expertise toward finding a solution for this form of crime.

Helpdesk scams occur when a victim receives a call, generally from a country such as India and Pakistan, from someone claiming to work for the helpdesk of a large and well-known company such as Microsoft. The scammers then use a variety of devious methods to gain access to the victim’s computer and transfer funds via Internet banking. Once transferred, the funds are often swiftly moved out of the country.

‘For us, this declaration of intent logically follows from our other partnerships to combat cybercrime and fraud,’ explains Emiel den Boer, Head of Crime Prevention at ABN AMRO. ‘By teaming up with partners from both the financial business and other sectors, we can present a strong united front toward this cowardly form of crime. We believe that it will allow us to better inform and protect not only our own clients, but also the clients of other banks and telecommunication companies.’

Statpro migrates key revolution calculation engine to microsoft azure data lake analytics platform

StatPro migrates key Revolution calculation engine to Microsoft Azure Data Lake Analytics platform

StatPro Group plc, (“StatPro”, AIM: SOG), the AIM listed provider of cloud-based portfolio analytics and asset pricing services for the global asset management industry, has migrated a key StatPro Revolution portfolio analytics engine to the Microsoft Azure Data Lake Analytics platform.

StatPro Revolution’s cloud processor engine was already leveraging the Microsoft Azure cloud platform using a HDInsight server cluster. In order to harness the power and elasticity of the cloud better, and to offload big data analysis and storage further from the core Revolution system to serverless cloud computing, StatPro has selected the Azure Data Lake Analytics service.

Microsoft Azure Data Lake Analytics offers a cloud-based data processing architecture, enabling processing of extremely large data sets and true parallel processing of structured and unstructured data. StatPro is using the technology for processing anonymized assets and non-client identifiable information for large benchmark calculations and Fixed Income analytics processing.

In recent tests, StatPro was able to process full benchmark re-calculation results for over 600 million rows of data in under 17 minutes compared to over two and a half hours using the previous engine technology.

Justin Wheatley, Chief Executive, commented:

“StatPro continues to research and invest in the best cloud technologies suited to our clients needs. As we develop new Fixed Income and benchmark analytics, we require enormous amounts of on-demand computing power to deliver results in totally new timeframes versus other systems.

“Reducing calculation times and providing analytics results faster than ever before provides real advantages and benefits to our clients.”