DIGITAL CUSTOMER SERVICES
The e-banking system for retail customers, Internet Bank, accessible at i.bspb.ru, is the principal online channel for the customers of Bank Saint Petersburg, offering increasingly better services and solutions at more favorable prices. The number of individuals who have signed up for i.bspb.ru showed a growth of 15% in 2019: from 1 130 000 to 1 300 000. One-third of the city’s economically active population has access to i.bspb.ru, and every third customer of the Bank uses the mobile banking application: The number of active users exceeded 370 000 per month. The share of users of the mobile banking application grew by 35% and reached 80% of the total number of Internet Bank users.
In 2019, the Bank updated its mobile banking application for individuals on iOS and Android platforms. The updated version of the application has the most relevant features that will make customers' lives easier and more comfortable. Now the mobile bank enables users to apply for a credit limit to the MIR debit card, for example, to a payroll card or to the Resident ID Card, as well as to Travelcards. Another innovation that was implemented in the mobile application is the ability to issue an insurance policy for travelers. Holders of YARKO and Travel cards, whose package of services includes an insurance program for travelers, no longer need to draw up a policy through a contact center or office. Now this option is available directly on a mobile phone: one just needs to click on the “Travel Insurance” button, confirm the spelling of the name and email address, and after a few seconds the policy will be delivered. If the policy is lost, it can be easily re-issued the same way through electronic channels.
The most important innovation of 2019 was the launch of the unique Exchange Bridge service, which allows individual customers to buy and sell 14 currencies online at a fixed rate. Nowadays the new service has no analogues among existing offers for individual customers. Within the Exchange Bridge service, the client gets the opportunity to buy and sell currency with a deferred settlement date upon paying 10–12% of the future transaction amount. At the same time, the Bank will accrue and pay monthly interest on the amount of the security deposit, and the planning horizon for a convenient settlement date in the future will be 365 days.
The Exchange Bridge won Time of Innovations 2019 award in the Product of the Year nomination in the Finance and Consulting category.
Other innovations for individual customers introduced in 2019:
- Application of a loan limit to an existing card;
- Simplification of the process of ordering a credit card on the Bank’s website;
- Payment in the BSPB Mobile for utility bills by QR code;
- Subscribing to automatic payment of utility bills;
- Updating and significantly simplifying the deposit selection section on the Bank’s website;
- Extending the functionality of push notifications.
In 2019, as a result of the implementation of the project on the transition to electronic vehicle passports with most of the vehicle manufacturing organizations in Russia joining in, significant changes in the car loan process can be highlighted. When making a loan transaction, verification of the status of the vehicle passport presented for the transaction is applied through the online service on the electronic portal of the electronic passport system.
In 2019, in partnership with the SRG group of companies, the Bank launched a real estate valuation service. This service will be useful in the process of obtaining a mortgage. Appraisal of primary and secondary housing, as well as real estate, is available upon refinancing or execution of loan secured by real estate. The user enters information about the property, attaches the necessary documents, selects an appraiser and pays for his services using the convenient method (including online). An electronic report that meets the requirements of the Bank will be ready in no more than a day.
At the end of 2019, 99% of corporate customers use the Internet Bank i2B, 99% of payments and FX transactions are made online.
In October 2019, the Bank expanded the list of digital channels for interacting with corporate clients and invited businesses to take advantage of the innovative BSPB Business mobile application.
BSPB Business is a logical stage in the transformation of the Bank into a digital bank for corporate and private clients. Now the Bank’s corporate clients can receive the necessary range of remote services for business, make payments and other banking operations quickly and securely, whenever and however convenient – through a computer, laptop, tablet or smartphone. The mobile bank was developed in cooperation with the leader of mobile application developers in Russia – Touch Instinct. The concept of BSPB Business is a Bank for daily use, and thus a simple and intuitive one with attractive and modern interface. Right from the start, the application provided such functions as quick entry, information on account balances, an informative history of operations with a wide range of filters, the possibility of repetition of payments, as well as creation of extract via a convenient form, sending it to e-mail, Traffic Light counterparty due diligence service, and other business-related options. Also, with the help of a mobile phone, no matter where in the world the Bank’s customer is located, he or she will be able to control the cash flows, changes in account balances, the dynamics of credit and withdrawal of funds by counterparties, with the amounts of credit and withdrawal for a certain period.
The BSPB Business became the Innovation of the Year in the Financial Services category of the Innovation Time 2019 award and received the Financial Elite of Russia 2019 award in the nomination Mobile Application for Business.
In addition, in June 2019, the Bank launched a telegram channel for EXIM customers. The channel features cases, opinions and estimates from true specialists in different EXIM fields, as well as the latest news of the world of export and import operations.
In 2019, the Bank in partnership with CSBI received awards in the “Best IT Solution” category in the “Digital Universe” nomination of the Retail Finance Awards 2019 for joint projects:
- Digital Contact Center: Algorithm Setting;
- Resident ID Card: remote registration.
Projects are implemented on the WF Core digital platform, CSBI’s own solution for automation of business cases.
In May 2019, the Bank started issuing multifunctional Resident ID Card for St. Petersburg citizens as part of the implementation of the city project.
During 2019, the efficient advancement of contactless payment continued:
- Acceptance of bank cards and tokens (digital card identifier in mobile devices) in a contactless mode for Mastercard and VISA payment cards has been launched at the ATMs of the Bank;
- A project was implemented to tokenize MIR payment system cards and provide services for performing transactions for the payment of goods, work and services using Mir Pay and Samsung Pay mobile devices;
- Throughout the acquiring network of the Bank’s terminals, the possibility of accepting UPI payment system cards in contactless mode has been implemented.
The TranzAxis Invoice platform has been launched into commercial operation, which allows to subscribe to receive invoices issued by service providers or its counterparties, as well as make autopayments on invoices.
From Since September 2019, the acceptance of payments in the network of payment kiosks of the Bank to school food factories within the framework of the project Schoolchild ID Card has begun.
In September 2019, the Bank together with St. Petersburg Metro SUE implemented a solution for the Metro fare payment at a reduced rate using MIR payment system cards as part of the promotion campaign of the National System of Payment Cards JSC.
At the end of 2019, more than 200 ticket vending machines of St. Petersburg Metro SUE were equipped with the Bank’s terminals accepting bank cards.
In 2019, the Bank introduced new card products for legal entities:
- MIR Business FTD for the Federal Treasury Department;
- Self-collection cards with an individual rate.
IT SUPPORT OF BUSINESS OPERATIONS
In 2019, in order to increase the efficiency of technological support for the business, measures were taken to deeply modernize transmission networks and data storage. As a result of the changes, the speed of information transfer to the data center was increased by 10 times and the outdated SAN equipment was replaced with an increase in productivity and the number of ports. In addition, a technical basis has been prepared for the 2020 project to modernize data storage systems.
Other measures taken by the Bank to increase the efficiency of technological support of business in 2019:
- A new test circuit for testing the loan conveyor has been developed. Development of unsecured lending in the new process is completed, 90% of testing has been completed;
- The work on modernizing the reception and recounting of cash at ATMs was completed, the process of accepting and recounting cash from additional offices of the Bank was modernized;
- A solution for ensuring information security for the Unified Biometric System was implemented;
- 3 updates of the “CFT-Bank” ABS version were carried out with no technical failures that could affect the Bank’s work;
- 50% of work was done to upgrade servers running Windows 2008R2;
- Measures were taken to upgrade the operating system to Windows10.
Since July 2019, the Bank’s Contact Center introduced a system of automated distribution of outgoing calls to retail customers, taking into account the priority of the largest conversion of offers on sale. Together with CRM development partners from CSBI, a solution was created on the basis of WFCore that allows to receive all calls for processing received from the site, Internet banking, mobile application, ATMs, as well as from the offer center, which can be performed by each operator automatically with a given priority. At the same time, the system monitors the fulfilment of tasks by the employee and provides the opportunity to receive a new call only after processing all those previously assigned. The first results, despite little experience using the new solution, are already noticeable: the reaction time to a client’s application on the site has reduced by 48%, the human factor has been excluded from the prioritization and sequence of calls.
In 2019, the Bank helped to launch a new platform functionality for REPO transactions of the National Settlement Depository. The first constituent entity of the Russian Federation, the Finance Committee of St. Petersburg, has been connected to the collateral management system of the National Settlement Depository (CMS NSD). The Bank became one of the most active participants in the process of preparing and launching a new instrument for the city. A platform for the placement of free liquidity in repo transactions (placement of securities with repurchase) has been in place since 2013. Since then over RUB 230 tn were placed with the help of the system.
In 2019, the Bank completed a pilot project for the robotization of operational activities. Due to the software robot on the Kofax RPA platform, it was possible to achieve a threefold reduction in the effort to generate transaction reports. Kofax RPA is a system that provides the launch of robots to perform routine tasks of collecting, converting and migrating data. As part of the project, a software robot has been launched during the reconciliation of reports on completed transactions using bank cards of Visa and Mastercard international payment systems with the CFT accounting system data. Every day the robot analyzes over 70 summary reports for the Bank’s operation department. If the information does not match, the system generates corrective entries in the CFT ABS. It takes the robot no more than an hour to collect, process and aggregate data, while a company employee previously spent from 3 to 6 hours of working time to solve this problem. The implementation of the system was entrusted to the Corus Consulting team. Earlier, the Bank, together with Corus Consulting, automated lending processes on the Microsoft Dynamics CRM platform, formed a unified electronic credit dossier based on Microsoft SharePoint and implemented a communication platform based on 1C-Bitrix24: Enterprise.
In 2019, the Bank took another step towards the banking processes robotization via RPA (RoboticProcessAutomation). RPA is a software that imitates human interaction with information systems in order to carry out business processes. Now the Bank has a new digital employee — MARS (Multifunctional Autonomous Robot Staff) that helps automate routine work and free up time for more complex tasks. MARS helps complete the processes of the Operations Directorate, Settlement Support Directorate, Cash Management Directorate, and Product Department.
The Bank pays great attention to the security of remote customer service systems. Protecting customer data and operations is one of the Bank’s top priorities. In 2019, the Bank continued to implement the Bank’s Information Security Strategy for 2018-2020.
In 2019, counteraction to fraud in payment channels, including the automation of monitoring processes of unauthorized operations, was being established. BI.ZONE will provide services to the Bank in order to prevent, promptly respond and effectively investigate incidents related to financial fraud. In addition, the Bank and BI.ZONE exchange data on new cyber threats, on how to identify and prevent incidents. The monitoring process of fraudulent transactions in all digital service channels is automated by the BI.ZONE Cloud Fraud Prevention solution, which, via artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies, verifies all payments made in real time, as well as prevents unauthorized transactions. The decision allows to fully comply with the requirements of FZ-167 “On Amendments to Certain Legislative Acts of the Russian Federation with regard to Counteracting Theft of Tunds”.
In November, the Information Security Incident Monitoring and Response team on duty started providing 24-hour support. Now the Bank is reliably protected both day and night, and on weekends and holidays. The creation of a 24-hour team takes the Bank’s information security to a new qualitative level — now the Bank’s information security specialists are ready to repel a cyber attack 24 hours, 7 days a week.
In the framework of protection against targeted attacks, the Endpoint Detection and response (EDR) system of one of the leading Russian companies in the field of information security was introduced at all workstations.
In order to maintain the protection system in a high degree of readiness to repel external and internal attacks, the Bank regularly conducts various pen-tests (penetration tests), including the most modern ones in the RedTeam format.
The Bank accredited its Certifying Center at the Ministry of Digital Development, Telecommunications and Mass Media of the Russian Federation and expanded the list of services in terms of providing customers with legal electronic signatures.
The Bank continues to expand and develop cooperation with leading Russian and international companies in the field of information security which ensures a high level of protection of the Bank’s infrastructure, banking information and services.
The high level of compliance of the Bank’s information security system with the latest requirements has been confirmed by successful audits in accordance with such standards as GOST R 57580.1-2017 “Security of financial (banking) operations. Protection of information of financial organizations. Basic set of organizational and technical measures”; Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) and a number of others.