Bendigo, The Bank For The Ageing Facing Digital Problems After Hostile AGM
Is Bendigo Bank, who we revealed last week was discriminating against high tech builders, who are today seen as being cutting edge and the future for Australia’s shortfall in housing, now facing a digital future problem with their customers wanting cash as opposed to the Google Cloud delivered digital services the bank is investing in.
Australia’s fifth largest bank is struggling to get past being the bank for ageing Australians, who want cash transactions over digital, which the bank is currently tipping millions into, despite questions now being raised by their ageing customer base as to why digital.
At the bank’s annual general meeting last week CEO and managing director Marnie Baker reported that the bank is finally catching up with digital banking with the launch next year of new digital product offerings as part of its transformation process.
This led to a lot of angst among attendees at the AGM with their retiree shareholders insisting that the bank maintains access to traditional services such as cash transactions over delivering new digital capabilities.
Unlike Bendigo Bank, their competitors have spent tens of millions building out digital transaction engines that cuts down on online scammers and fraudsters while providing a host of new services that consumers can tap into.
Baker has admitted that the bank is trying to “educate” customers on how to use digital channels with their own front end loan staff getting frustrated with the banks attitude and current modus operation that is stopping them attracting customers away from the digitally literate banks.
Despite recent investments in new digital systems the bank is taking weeks and in some cases months to make a loan decision because of the “processes that applicants” have to jump through when applying for a loan.
Several shareholders asked the Banks Chairperson to explain digital terms such as “hyperlinks” that were referenced during the meeting – a strong indication they would be unlikely to fulfill their obligations to the bank if they signed up to use its online services.
In response to one shareholder’s concerns, chief executive Marnie Baker conceded that the online crime problem was a major challenge for the bank.
Earlier today, Home Affairs and Cyber Security Minister Clare O’Neil called on businesses to immediately patch vulnerabilities that Australia’s top cyber spies have warned about for as long as four months and are leaving them open to cyberattacks and digital problems that banks such as Bendigo face.
It is the first time a government minister has publicly urged the patching of specific software bugs, underscoring the urgency for businesses to shut the door to cybercriminals potentially installing malicious software on bank and company networks.
Three critical bug alerts were sent out by the Australian Signals Directorate’s Australian Cyber Security Centre in June, July, and August. However, the government says Australian businesses have not moved fast enough, and the ACSC is receiving reports weekly of incidents across all industries that could have been avoided if patches were installed.
ChannelNews has no evidence that Bendigo Bank is one of the Companies that has failed to respond.
Despite the concerns of their customers the bank whose public relations boss takes to abusing journalists, who write stories about the Banks operations that highlight their problems is currently working with Google to expand the banks digital operations that have lagged in the past.
The bank is using the Google Kubernetes Engine to scale back digital workloads in off-peak times, leading to what Bendigo claims delivers reduced costs and a better ability to meet customer demands.
Andrew Cresp, chief information officer at Bendigo and Adelaide Bank told ITNews recently that the shift will see the bank gain greater “scalability, resilience, and nimbleness.”
Unlike the sentiment expressed at their AGM Cresp claimed that motivator for the shift to cloud and digital banking was an acknowledgment “that our customer needs are always changing” so “we need to ensure that our technology and services we provide to our customers can be as quick as possible and reliant.”
The move saw the bank shift its consumer digital app and web platform onto the Google Cloud which forms part of its core banking system consolidation work today.
Alister Dias, vice president of Google Cloud Australia and New Zealand, said the shift enables Bendigo and Adelaide Bank to “not just radically strengthen its customer value proposition at scale, but also take even bolder steps into digital experiences with confidence.”
New data on cyberattack trends cites a 38% increase in global attacks in 2022, compared to 2021, according to Check Point Research.