1. Why must I go through these steps?
The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) has issued guidelines called “Authentication in an Internet Banking Environment.” * For financial institutions offering Internet-based financial services, the guidelines describe enhanced authentication methods that regulators expect financial institutions to use when verifying the identity of customers using online products and services. Financial institutions are expected to achieve compliance with the guidelines as soon as possible and bank examiners will include a review of this area during upcoming examinations.
The new steps represent an improvement in security that provides better protection for information about you, your business, and your customers. The steps are very similar to what is now experienced when logging into a bank website.
2. How is information security improved?
Information security generally involves the use of some or all of the following tools. By using all three tools, we are able to provide better information security.
Encryption is the process of taking all of the data that one computer is sending to another computer and encoding it in a way that only the receiving computer is able to decode. Merchant e-Solutions uses 128 bit encryption for this purpose.
Authentication is another process used by both the sender and receiver of information to confirm the source of the information. When information is authenticated, it means the source has been verified. These two processes, encryption and authentication, work hand-in-hand to create a more secure environment.
Strong Authentication uses several data elements (not just a password) and network identification techniques to verify the user and the website are correct. This provides you with better assurance that you are at the intended website and provides us with better assurance that you are an authorized user.
3. How does the new login registration process work?
The new login process consists of a series of screens in which you enter the following information:
Once the above is completed, only your User ID and Password are needed for future logins. But if you log in from a different computer or change information using the Profile Change option on the Main Menu, you may be asked to repeat some of the steps above or to answer a registration question.
*FDIC Guidance. Authentication in an Internet Banking Environment. Oct 12, 2005 FIL-103-2005. http://www.fdic.gov/news/news/financial/2005/fil10305.html.