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Part 1: Preparing for the Long Haul

Part 1: Preparing for the Long Haul

Thoughts on National Cyber Security Month

I’m a runner. I’ve participated in a lot of 10k races and 6 marathons—including the 116th running of the Boston Marathon and the grueling all-day 1st annual Market to Market run in Nebraska. I’ve been running my whole life, but competing in these big events takes strategy—to not just stay in running shape, but to keep me improving.

Managing security is not unlike running a marathon—both take immense preparation and dedication. And, if you’re properly prepared, you’ll have a great experience. At Q2, we’ve prepared for great customer experiences by designing our digital strategy with an emphasis on security.

To be fully race-ready for a marathon, you begin training18-20 weeks before the day of the race. But having a solid foundation before this training period begins makes you more competitive—and more likely to have a positive experience. There are a lot of training courses, materials, and videos online to help you prepare for race day, but you still have to do the training. And once you start, you have to stay with it. After the training period starts, missing even a day or two can set you back significantly—and can result in injuries, missed goals, or even missing the race entirely. During this execution stage, you have to trust that your training will lead to an good experience—and you have to take your commitment to the race seriously.

Security is very similar. If you design your digital strategy with an emphasis on security, you’ll see improvements in customer experience. There are multiple layers of security that you can design into your digital experience, but you still have to do the work. Once you begin executing, neglecting just one or two security requirements can hurt your organization—potentially resulting in undesirable compliance, reputational, or operational outcomes. During this execution stage, you have to trust that your security foundation will lead to an improved customer experience—and you have to take your commitment to security seriously.

Finishing a marathon is a feeling like no other—it makes all the hard work worthwhile. Similarly, security done well is completely worth the effort—although committing to security, like a marathon, means you’re in it for the long haul. But by continually improving security and simplifying the user experience, you can build digital trust with your account holders—driving engagement and improving retention rates through your digital channels.

I speak from experience. Security and running can be fun and rewarding, as long as you prepare for the experience and stick with it. Q2 can help make your online and mobile banking experience fun and secure. Join me throughout October as we bring cybersecurity into focus. Each week, I will explore what continuous digital trust means to your online and mobile banking experience.

Thank you and Happy National Cyber Security Awareness Month.

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