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Mortgage Software Solutions Blog

Cloud Storage Reduces IT Costs and Improves Scalability for Mortgage Companies


Mobile phone in hand

Those of you who've worked in the mortgage industry for the last two decades know how much has changed in just the last five years. Technologies have evolved quickly to provide more ways to accomplish tasks, including superior organization. Despite this, you've perhaps balked on finding ways to reduce your IT costs. Doing things the same way is perhaps hard to break after being in business for over 20 years.

Don't become complacent, because many IT solutions are affordable and necessary.  Security should be paramount when storing client information.  Today's software is being written to comply with the latest regulatory requirements and not all of it is expensive either.

With a rise in cloud and mobile technologies, you can do so much more while paying less. The same goes with scalability.

Using Automation to Improve Client Communication

When you look at the biggest challenges facing mortgage organizations like yours, client communication is at the top of the list. In a time when you likely have to compete with other lending agencies a short distance away, you need to keep your clients loyal.

The way forward is to use automation to gain efficiency. The older methods of reaching your clients only by phone can frequently lead to delays. Consider other communication methods, texting for example may be the best way to shorten the business cycle.    

Automating your communication will allow you to reach your clients faster and provide the ability to personalize content for more sucessful lead generation. Through affordable mobile technology and automation, you can send information at key times to your existing or prospective clients. Doing so educates them on their mortgage options.

Using the Cloud for Data Storage and Retrieval

We noted a while ago that cloud security is the future of all mortgage companies. After saying this over two years ago, it's a fact now, and a must to prepare for the unexpected.

Considering on-site servers can easily become hacked, you need to upgrade to the cloud to keep yourself compliant with client data. While cloud pricing varies depending on needs, it still reduces cost because you're eliminating maintenance on your own servers.

During disasters, you're also preparing yourself for business continuity. You can access anything in the cloud 24/7 as long as you have an Internet connection. When a disaster strikes, you can retrieve all client information immediately to keep your lending business on its feet.

The Use of Mobile Apps to Simplify the Lending Process

Many home buyers want to simplify how they obtain a mortgage without all the protracted steps. Creating a mobile app to make the process easier helps remove complex steps otherwise increasing your operating costs.

An app gives your clients more control over the time it takes to get a loan and the terms they want. Despite apps requiring design time, they'll pay off long-term thanks by increasing business and gaining your customers' trust.

Transparency is an important aspect to lending today. Allowing this through mobile technology is essential, as long as you have quality IT management in place.

Scaling Your Mortgage Company

To keep up with demands, you can do a lot of practical things to scale your mortgage business. If you're short on clients, Zillow reminds using CRM software can often help connect better with potential customers. Also redesigning your website and starting a blog can get home buyers more interested.

During times when you just need to find room to expand data, the cloud can scale quickly for you. This eliminates having to depend on other risky storage methods. When you want to scale due to unexpected growth, you can do so with the cloud, plus still have room for further growth down the road.

At Access Business Technologies, we provide game-changing technologies and tools to help your mortgage business reduce costs while still growing. Our MortgageWorkspace product allows you to scale quickly and securely by putting your business into the cloud. It offers efficient ways to keep your data compliant using intuitive dashboards and admin tools. Learn more about how MortageWorkspace can make the mortgage process easier for your employees and customers by scheduling a call with us. 

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Topics: Compliance Cloud Mortgage Servicing Cloud Computing MortgageWorkSpace cloud storage

Leverage Your Cloud Software for a More Efficient Workflow

 

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Making the most of your mortgage software for an efficient workflow is an admirable goal. However, it’s not enough to have this goal; you have to know how to make it come to fruition. Read on to discover different ways to do this. But first, it’s important to understand the role of your software.

Mortgage Software

Your software should improve the borrower's experience when applying for a mortgage. It should also improve the efficacy of the your company’s internal operations.

Softwareor any tool you use—is not an added benefit to the mortgage process, however, if it adds unnecessary steps to the employee's workload and slows down the workflow.

We need it to meet the needs of lenders, including the demands imposed by the Consumer Financial Protection Board's regulatory schemes. When it is successful, mortgage software plays to the your company’s strengths. It fills in gaps where there would typically be deficiencies. And, perhaps most difficult of all, it predicts regulatory requirements.

Understanding Your Organizational Workflow

Learning how mortgage software can improve your workflow and how to select the right product requires an intense evaluation of the two processes that make up the workflow.

  • internal operations
  • borrower experience

Internal Operations

Each mortgage application has the same basic stages (although additional requirements may attach for specific loans). Organizations need to understand, by evaluating and analyzing the processes, how they operate in each of the stages described below:

  • pre-qualification
  • application
  • verification
  • processing
  • underwriting
  • closing

Managers probably have their own ideas of how their companies may improve the various stages. After all, it is not always a one-size-fits-all solution. It is important to evaluate these stages not only in terms of legacy processes but also in terms of how they might improve through the use of cloud technology.

The analysis of a workflow provides an opportunity to review compliance efforts and see where automation or cloud technology can help improve compliance. An added benfefit is that it may even save time and money.

A prime example is the three-day disclosure rule. A tool that automatically sends disclosure information within the three-day disclosure window may eliminate human errors (inconsistencies) and speed up the process at the same time. Cloud software applications may save time by verifying data provided by borrowers against aggregate databases.

Your analysis will show where you have bottlenecks, inefficiencies, and duplication of effort. When you look at the workflow priorities together with the organization's strategic goals, the type of software that works best for the organization will become apparent.

The Borrower's Experience

The digital mortgage is coming to the industry. For a business that has relied on face-to-face communication with borrowers and a significant paper trail, it may seem a difficult transition. There are, however, many ways that technology can improve the borrower experience. In fact, borrowers may move easier in that direction than lenders.

On-demand services in other consumer areas has led borrowers to expect faster service from elsewhere in their lives, including what is typically considered the largest purchase of a person’s life - home buying. The process will never match push-button, instant satisfaction like other consumer service areas, because of the compliance aspect. Technology, however, can help in two ways.

  • Transparency through on-line dashboards, mobile applications, and other self-serve features
  • Access to loan data through digitally managed and delivered documents, and a holistic view of their data helps borrowers feel they have a better handle on their loans

MortgageWorkSpace®

This powerful cloud-based portal from Access Business Technologies provides your teams the freedom from the paper chase that they want, but with the control they need over internal workflow and compliance processes. With Mortgage WorkSpace offers your company the abilities to manage documentation, software applications, devices and security all from within the portal. Additionally, it includes Office 365 Mortgage, giving you the advantages of Office 365 but built specifically for the mortgage industry.

To learn more about how cloud-based solutions can make your mortgage company more efficient, please contact us.



 

Topics: MortgageWorkSpace

ABT will be at the annual MBA Technology convention in Chicago

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Access Business Technologies will be attending the annual MBA convention in Chicago as a vendor and sponsor this March 26-29 2017.   Visit us in booth #1201 to see a live mixed-reality of the new technology...Mortgage Business Intelligence. As a mortgage industry technology leader we've experienced change... the type of change that requires us to come together to share ideas and find solutions. The past several years have presented many challenges. We've risen to the occasion and as we continue focusing on our customers, efficiency and transparency, we are moving our industry's technology forward. #TECH17 

It's a new day and our industry has never been stronger. Which means there's no better time or place to forge ahead than at the industry's largest gathering of mortgage banker professionals. Join us March 26-29 2017 in Chicago at MBA's Annual Technology Convention & Expo for unparalleled opportunities to network, learn and lead our industry.

MBA's Annual Technology Convention & Expo is taking place at the Hyatt Regency in Chicago.

Chicago is a city of world class status and unsurpassed beauty, drawing visitors from around the nation and the globe. Located on the shores of Lake Michigan in the heart of the Midwest, Chicago is home to the blues, several sports teams an internationally acclaimed symphony orchestra, spectacular live theater, celebrated architecture, and thousand s of restaurants, museums and shopping.

Access Business Technologies, headquartered in Northern California, was founded in 1999 as a leading provider of hosted, on-demand software for mortgage loan origination, servicing and pipeline management. Access Business Technologies (ABT) provides access to business technologies that empower mortgage professionals to safely perform at the top of their game anytime, anywhere. ABT proactively supports, defends and manages game-changing technologies and processes that help mortgage professionals excel. We are a certified SSAE 16 Type II cloud solution provider to over 500 mortgage financial institutions.

We are partnered with nearly a dozen leading mortgage software vendors. Our partnerships with the best mortgage software in the world integrate our cloud suite of products, to empower your workforce to produce more loans safely anywhere and anytime.

Topics: ABT MortgageWorkSpace Mortgage BI

ABT will be at the Experience 17 convention in Las Vegas

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Access Business Technologies will be attending the Ellie Mae Experience 17 convention in Las Vegas as a vendor and sponsor this March 6 - 8 2017.   Visit us in booth #704 to see a live mixed-reality of the new technology...Mortgage Business Intelligence. As a mortgage industry technology leader we've experienced change... the type of change that requires us to come together to share ideas and find solutions. The past several years have presented many challenges. We've risen to the occasion and as we continue focusing on our customers, efficiency and transparency, we are moving our industry #EXPERIENCE17. 

It's a new day and our industry has never been stronger. Which means there's no better time or place to forge ahead than at the industry's largest gathering of real estate finance professionals. March 6 - 8 2017 in Las Vegas at Ellie Mae's Experience 17 convention & Expo for unparalleled opportunities to network, learn and lead our industry #FORWARD

Experience 17 Convention & Expo is taking place at the Wynn Hotel. Join ABT as we exibit at the Experience 17. An entire community of Ellie Mae product experts, 3,000 Encompass users, and mortgage industry leaders will be on hand to demonstrate new innovations, discuss the latest strategies, share best practices, and provide hands-on training. The networking alone is an incredible opportunity to get problem-solving techniques, real-life insights, and practical approaches

For years, Las Vegas has enjoyed its own place in American culture. Elvis, showgirls and neon lights are just some of the pop culture icons associated with the Entertainment Capital of the World.
In recent years, Las Vegas has secured its place on the cultural map. From the highbrow to the kitschy, you can bet on the destination to deliver a well-rounded dose of art and culture.

Access Business Technologies, headquartered in Northern California, was founded in 1999 as a leading provider of hosted, on-demand software for mortgage loan origination, servicing and pipeline management. Access Business Technologies (ABT) provides access to business technologies that empower mortgage professionals to safely perform at the top of their game anytime, anywhere. ABT proactively supports, defends and manages game-changing technologies and processes that help mortgage professionals excel. We are a certified SSAE 16 Type II cloud solution provider to over 500 mortgage financial institutions.

We are partnered with nearly a dozen leading mortgage software vendors. Our partnerships with the best mortgage software in the world integrate our cloud suite of products, to empower your workforce to produce more loans safely anywhere and anytime.

Topics: ABT MortgageWorkSpace Mortgage BI

10 Reasons to Move Your Mortgage Business to the Cloud Today

Move-Your-Mortgage-Business-to-the-Cloud.jpgThe mortgage industry has become increasingly vulnerable to outsiders accessing consumer protected information. A data breach can result in costs to the business for recovering information and adopting higher security protocols. It may also result in lost customer relationships and damage to the business’s reputation.

When your mortgage business moves its core business operations to the cloud, you can eliminate many risks to consumer data and security compliance. The transition to the cloud isn't only about storing company documents. Now companies can host and access their entire desktop, including all business applications, directly from the cloud.

Moving to the cloud can, in turn, ease the minds of customers about security and help your mortgage business increase productivity. Here are our top 10 reasons to move to the cloud:

1. Data Storage

All of a mortgage company's electronic information can become stored in cloud-based servers and can include the additional protection of backup servers. If your company's primary cloud-based servers go down, the business applications that they contain will move over to backup servers, thereby minimizing the impact on your business operations and keeping your customers’ personal data intact.

2. Data Security

Your company can use newer software within a mortgage cloud platform in order to protect better consumer information. All electronic data that your company collects will be stored in the cloud, and it will be harder for hackers to gain access because of better data encryption technologies that govern the exchange of information in all areas of the suite.

3. Ease of Collaboration

Every person who handles consumer data and information related to mortgage transactions will access information faster from any on-site or off-site computer. All it takes is access to the software suite through an Internet connection and a valid set of login credentials.

4. Ease of Communication

All employees are recording their work on a customer's account in the same productivity suite, which is based in the cloud. They can "talk" to each other through the same system. One person who processes closing paperwork for a mortgage transaction, for example, can complete tasks without having to wait until the lead person on the account is back in the office. Every mortgage gets worked on when an assigned employee has the time to devote to it.

5. Ease of Recordkeeping

Electronic records of a client's mortgage file are easy to create in a productivity suite and to store in the cloud. A cloud-based suite ensures that every document is also stored in an electronic archive. For complying with government regulations and for auditing purposes within your busy mortgage enterprise, electronic record retrieval makes perfect sense.

6. Virtual Protection of the Paper Trail

By moving to the cloud, your company does not have to worry about physically protecting the same volume of paper records from hazards such as fire and theft. Use a suite with cloud backup solutions to obtain electronic records on demand.

7. Flexibility

Employees can choose which part of the productivity suite to use for their business activities. They can use a cloud-based workspace to make notes about every aspect of a transaction.

8. Remote Access

Employees can work from home or when they are away on a business or personal trip. They can access important details about a client's file and give feedback to people in the office. They can easily obtain the status of work that other employees have performed on the same file.

9. Technical Support

All of your business applications require ongoing support from IT personnel. With all desktop applications operating from the cloud, you can use a combination of in-house personnel and outsourced personnel to service these applications. For example, desktop support on evenings and weekends may get outsourced so that you don't have to pay your IT people overtime.

10. Transparency

Your organization can become more transparent to customers. Use a cloud productivity suite to give updates to each customer about the status of his or her mortgage application. Message customers from a secure cloud-based workspace and give access to any employees who should view the history of all communications with a client.

For more details on how to move your mortgage business to the cloud through our MortgageWorkspace™ technology—without buying any new machines or software licenses—contact us today.

Get Started

Topics: Cloud MortgageWorkSpace

This Is How Business Intelligence Could Revolutionize the Mortgage Industry

How Business Intelligence Could Revolutionize the Mortgage Industry .jpgHow many information systems does your mortgage company deal with on a daily or weekly basis? How many databases do you need to navigate in order to close a mortgage loan? Stop and consider how many more sources of data are feeding into your IT network than are evident at first glance. Wouldn’t you love to have the reporting and analysis tools to help you make the most of all this data? The right business intelligence system for mortgage companies can put an information revolution into your hands and drive your lending business to the top of the market.

The Business Intelligence Advantage for Data

Business intelligence systems gather all of the data that pours into your business operation into one entity. These Big Data tools enable your IT systems to provide business insights about new opportunities as well as to manage your normal operations at a higher level of efficiency, all from a dashboard that works on desktop, smartphone, and tablet devices. As a small business in the mortgage industry, you can now have a world-class IT system that delivers business intelligence—one that is smart, secure, and able to incorporate all of your resources into one comprehensive picture.

This business intelligence transformation is giving the competitive advantage to its enthusiasts in all industries. Companies that do not invest in updating their business intelligence tools will fall behind and likely perish. The mortgage industry is no different; your current competitors are considering new IT solutions, if not implementing them already. Soon, the market leader in mortgage lending will be the one that makes the best use of this versatile resource.

Database Solutions That Deliver Insights

The most advanced information systems will help you spend more time building your business and less time running your office. IT systems depend on databases, but simple databases have transformed into cloud-based data warehouses which hold vast arrays of structured and unstructured data, and which gather and process data in real time.

Cloud-based business intelligence solutions replace expensive capital investments in IT departments with efficient, scalable Software as a Service (SaaS) subscriptions. Now, you do not have to make the massive capital investment required for on-site assets or recruit large IT departments; you can work where you want and still have all of the business intelligence resources needed to deliver service and results. Finally, you can do this while keeping your data safe and your operation up to date with security compliance.

How to Revolutionize the Mortgage Industry With BI

The Big Data tools that deliver business intelligence help you to make better lending decisions and make the loan process much simpler, faster, and less expensive. With these tools you can analyze mountains of documents and accounts to determine the risk profiles in lending portfolios. You will also gain compliance and security tools to keep out unauthorized users and to reveal potential fraud.

The net impact is that when you have the business intelligence insights, you will make business decisions faster, control risk more accurately, and deliver a service experience that delights your customers. The revolution in business intelligence is giving small and medium-sized businesses resources that were recently only available to the largest enterprises, enabling them to understand markets and customers in real time, and allowing them to make lending decisions with greater confidence.

BI Solutions From Access Business Technologies

MortgageWorkSpace® from Access Business Technologies is a cloud-based mortgage technology platform that extracts business intelligence insights and delivers the reports and analytics that make the mortgage process easier for you and a better experience for your customers. The business intelligence solutions from ABT give you real-time and analytic dashboard tools to see the big picture while ensuring security and delivering content to authorized users only.

The result is a data management system that very quickly absorbs information and searches for patterns that indicate undiscovered opportunities. In the mortgage business, these insights might produce a unique best offer for a single client or they might reveal an underserved segment of the market. To find out how Access Business Technologies can help you take advantage of the business intelligence revolution, contact us today.

Learn More

Topics: MortgageWorkSpace Business Intelligence

ABT will be at the annual MBA convention in Boston

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Access Business Technologies will be attending the annual MBA convention in Boston as a vendor and sponsor this October 23-26 2016.   Visit us in booth #802 to see a live mixed-reality of the new technology...Mortgage Business Intelligence. As a mortgage industry technology leader we've experienced change... the type of change that requires us to come together to share ideas and find solutions. The past several years have presented many challenges. We've risen to the occasion and as we continue focusing on our customers, efficiency and transparency, we are moving our industry #FORWARD. 

It's a new day and our industry has never been stronger. Which means there's no better time or place to forge ahead than at the industry's largest gathering of real estate finance professionals. Join us October 23-26 2016 in Boston at MBA's Annual Convention & Expo for unparalleled opportunities to network, learn and lead our industry #FORWARD

MBA's Annual Convention & Expo is taking place at the Hynes Convention Center

The greater Boston area is a wonderful blend of stylish sophistication and historic New England charm. Attend one of its renowned events, uncover Boston's history by walking its famous Freedom Trail, dine in one of its new restaurants (or dine in an old favorite), shop anywhere from upscale boutiques on Newbury Street to premium outlet malls a short distance from downtown Boston, take a tour... the possibilities are endless!

Access Business Technologies, headquartered in Northern California, was founded in 1999 as a leading provider of hosted, on-demand software for mortgage loan origination, servicing and pipeline management. Access Business Technologies (ABT) provides access to business technologies that empower mortgage professionals to safely perform at the top of their game anytime, anywhere. ABT proactively supports, defends and manages game-changing technologies and processes that help mortgage professionals excel. We are a certified SSAE 16 Type II cloud solution provider to over 500 mortgage financial institutions.

We are partnered with nearly a dozen leading mortgage software vendors. Our partnerships with the best mortgage software in the world integrate our cloud suite of products, to empower your workforce to produce more loans safely anywhere and anytime.

Topics: ABT MortgageWorkSpace Mortgage BI

October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month

National_Cybersecurity_Awareness_Month.jpgEvery October since 2004, the United States has observed National Cybersecurity Awareness Month. Computer security is always important, but the month when spooks, zombies, and demons are on display is a fitting time for the mortgage business to give it focused attention.

In last year's proclamation, President Obama said, "I urge all Americans to take measures to decrease their susceptibility to malicious cyber activity, including by choosing stronger passwords, updating software, and practicing responsible online behavior."

The Department of Homeland Security and the National Cyber Security Alliance are major forces behind the month's events. Weekly themes will include:

  • October 3–7: Every Day Steps Towards Online Safety with Stop.Think.Connect.™
  • October 10–14: Cyber from the Break Room to the Board Room
  • October 17–21: Recognizing and Combating Cybercrime
  • October 24–28: Our Continuously Connected Lives: What’s Your ‘App’-titude?
  • October 31: Building Resilience in Critical Infrastructure

The theme for this year is "Our Shared Responsibility." Security isn't a zero-sum game where stopping attackers means they'll just go somewhere else. When more businesses prevent breaches, there's less reward for criminals and therefore less incentive for them to keep trying. On the other hand, losing valuable data or paying ransomware demands doesn't just cost an institution—it gives the thieves more resources to fund their next exploit.

The mortgage business is a popular target for cybercrime because of the opportunity for financial gain. Security expert Jeff Bernstein warns of the increasing threat to mortgage companies, with damage already in the billions of dollars, and offers some simple advice: "Most security compromises happen because somebody is doing something that they shouldn’t do." Awareness of the right practices can greatly reduce risks.

Individuals and organizations, including businesses of all sizes, can become NCSAM Champions simply by registering online and pledging to take some constructive action to raise public or internal awareness.

Access Business Technologies is constantly at work promoting the best security practices for the mortgage business. Several areas are especially important in this field:

  • Authentication. Properly identifying customers prevents fraud through impersonation and identity theft. It is possible to do this without causing serious inconvenience.
  • Confidentiality. Guarding your clients’ personal information is vital. Submission of documents, storage on the company's data systems, transfer between employees, and storage on employee computers are all potential risk areas. Protecting confidentiality requires making sure that even the weakest points are strong.
  • Personal security practices. Each employee needs to be aware of security issues. Employees should avoid opening suspicious emails, and they should be even more cautious about opening unexpected attachments and following questionable links. They should take extreme care with which devices they plug into their computers and which applications they download.
  • Protection of portable devices. It is important to secure data on employees’ personal devices. Losing a laptop, phone, or tablet can lead to big trouble if the device holds unencrypted sensitive information. Any portable device that's authorized for sensitive customer data needs to be encrypted with a strong password, and portable devices that aren't encrypted should never hold such data.
  • Intrusion prevention. Mortgage businesses have to keep intruders out of computers and networks that hold sensitive data. Malware and spyware can get into a network through many paths and then steal information or damage data.
  • Protection against insider breaches. Theft by trusted employees is especially hard to stop, since they need to have access to data in order to do their jobs. In March of 2016, employees of Mount Olympus Mortgage Company allegedly stole loan files and took them to a competitor, Guaranteed Rate. Limitations on access and routine audits can reduce this kind of risk.
  • Breach detection. Monitoring systems are necessary to catch any breach as quickly as possible. Quick detection can limit the extent of the damage and allow a quicker recovery.
  • Remediation procedures. A mortgage business needs a plan of action to prepare for the possibility of sensitive information being compromised. Affected parties need to be notified without any cover-up or delay.

Last year, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued a press release reminding everyone of the "risks that cyber threats pose to individual banks and thrifts, as well as the financial system as a whole."

Access Business Technology's software tools, including DeviceGuardian, DocumentGuardian, and EmailGuardian enable mortgage businesses to handle all aspects of the lending process in keeping with strict security compliance, without compromising convenience for customers. Contact us to learn how these tools can aid your business.

National Cybersecurity Awareness Month is an excellent time for mortgage businesses to review and tighten their procedures and to remind their customers of the importance of data security. Promoting general awareness with the hashtag #CyberAware and using the Stop.Think.Connect. Toolkit will encourage employees to do their part. Be a Champion and help to promote and institute best practices for protecting customer data.

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Topics: ABT MortgageWorkSpace cybersecurity

6 Reasons You Need MortgageWorkSpace® With Business Intelligence

MortgageWorkSpace_now_featuring_Business_Intelligence.jpgWith all the changes going on in the world of technology today, it's apparent to us that mortgage companies need more (and better) data to drive their business and security decisions. With MortgageWorkSpace® now featuring Business Intelligence, mortgage companies can easily obtain, organize, and act on that information from the cloud-based platform they know and love.

Business Intelligence gives you insights into your business, unlike any you’ve had before. Collecting huge amounts of data is a good thing, but it is only useful if you can interpret both structured and unstructured data. Understanding the data you collect allows you to analyze your business and use the insights from that analysis to create and take advantage of new business opportunities.

Here are six reasons why Business Intelligence is the perfect tool to help you maximize the advantages of Big Data.

1. Business Intelligence can create new business opportunities.

Business Intelligence can provide you with reports and process analytics that you mine from your online presence. It helps you manage how your business performs and make adjustments to your business strategies, such as product placement and pricing.

Predictive and prescriptive analytics are two of the common uses of Business Intelligence. These tools can help you increase your knowledge of your customer base, learning what types of incentives would help retain customers and who your strongest brand promoters may be.

2. You can gather Business Intelligence from data collected from sources outside and inside your business.

The most compelling Business Intelligence combines external data from your particular market segment with data mined from your own internal departments, like financial data and operations information. Combined Business Intelligence can suggest new markets, analyze how your services might appeal to certain market segments, and gauge the effectiveness of your current and proposed marketing plans.

3. Business Intelligence can provide relevant facts and figures.

Business Intelligence provides relevant facts and figures but in a meaningful and useful way. In addition, powerful software programs can present your Business Intelligence information to you in rich graphics, with features that allow you to organize the collected information in the way that makes the most sense to your business.

4. If you have been looking for Business Intelligence software, specifically designed for mortgage companies, you can relax.

MortgageWorkSpace® is the only software specifically designed for mortgage companies. And, in a very exciting development, software giant Microsoft partnered with MortgageWorkSpace® to feature their Power BI software inside the MortgageWorkSpace® portal.

5. MortgageWorkSpace® helps you use your Business Intelligence while you manage your mortgage business.

MortgageWorkSpace® is a portal that helps you manage your devices, your users, the software you use to run your mortgage business, and the data that your business collects. It allows you to do everything you need from one location. You can deploy and manage your loan origination software to all your branches and by department. And now, you can access Microsoft's best-in-class software, Power BI, from inside the portal.

6. Power BI is the tool set for a mortgage company.

PowerBI is Microsoft's suite of tools that helps you analyze data from finance, sales, operations, and other areas of your business and your market. Most significantly, Power BI is a cloud-based platform that includes powerful dashboards that now give you data in real-time. Through Access Business Technologies’ cloud hosting providers, you will have everything you need to interact with your customers anywhere.

Appropriately enough, Microsoft named them Real-Time Dashboards. The talk is that the Real-Time Dashboards are so powerful and fast that you will be able to receive customer perceptions while they are still in your office (or, presumably, online). Best of all, Power BI users do not need special technical expertise to create useful graphics that help them visualize their business's data. The new power of this Microsoft tool is taking MortgageWorkSpace® to a whole new level.

If you want to learn more about the latest changes to Microsoft's Power BI, read CMSWire’s article by David Roe from August 12, 2016, entitled "Microsoft Power BI Dashboards Deliver Real-Time Data."

If you are looking for a way to stop mortgage cyber-attackers and boost your vulnerability management solutions, we can help. To talk more about Power BI or the other tools available to your mortgage business, please contact us.

Learn More

Topics: ABT MortgageWorkSpace Business Intelligence

7 Common Questions About Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)

Multifactor_authentication_MFA_.jpgAs data security professionals, it's clear to us why mortgage companies should be using multi-factor authentication (MFA) in their businesses. Yet many mortgage firms are still resistant to adopting this technology for fear that it will only complicate processes and slow productivity. However, the benefits of this added security far outweighs the additional effort it requires.

Here are answers to seven of the most commonly asked questions about MFA that you should consider before ruling out multi-factor authentication for your mortgage business.

1. What is MFA?

Multi-factor authentication (MFA) combines two or more independent authentication factors. For example, suppose your website required your clients to enter something only they would know upon login (password), something they have (like a one-time smartphone authentication token provided by special software), and a biometric identifier (like a thumbprint). It is pretty hard for a mortgage cyber-attacker to have all three of those items, especially the biometric identifier.

2. That seems like overkill. What is the point of all that security?

The goal of MFA security systems is to create layers of authentication that defend against hackers trying to breach your system's defenses. If a hacker breaches one authentication layer, there are one or two more still holding the line. MFA makes breaches more complicated and time-consuming for hackers.

When you consider that a breach of your security system exposes your mortgage clients to identity theft and fraud, protecting them with a layered system of security only makes sense. Old-fashioned security measures are no match for today's cyber criminals.

3. Are there typical multi-factor authentication systems I should consider?

Yes. Some systems require swiping a card at login and entering a pin. Others require the username/password and then an additional one-time password that the system generates and sends to the client's phone. This system is popular with banking websites, and using such a system would benefit mortgage companies as well. Other authentication systems require the user ID, the user's fingerprint, and the answer to a security question. Still others require users to first download a virtual private network (VPN) that has a valid certificate and then log in to the VPN in order to access the network.

It’s best to discuss your unique situation and security needs with an IT professional to determine exactly what type of multi-factor authentication will work best for you.

4. So, mortgage companies are vulnerable to such full-scale hacker attacks?

Absolutely. As computer processing speeds have increased, the scale of attacks on financial institutions and other businesses has increased. In addition, there are new hacker tools that can crack password codes more easily than ever before.

The GPGPU, for example, is a general purpose graphics processing unit. GPGPUs can conduct calculations that would normally be done on a CPU at a higher rate: 500,000,000 passwords per second!

Another tool, known as rainbow tables, can crack 14-character passwords (even those with alphanumeric characters) in less than three minutes. It is not hard to see that one-layer password protection and even two-layer protection are no longer good enough.

5. I still don't get it. How does MFA work?

Multi-factor authentication throws a few roadblocks in the hacker's pathway. Location factors are one way for a security system to identify a person's identity. For example, work schedules and location can determine whether a user is who he says he is. Time is another example of a security layer. If a person uses his phone at a job in the US, it is physically impossible for him to use it again from Europe 15 minutes later. These are especially helpful in online bank fraud and, by extension, mortgage company fraud.

6. Sounds like something the mortgage industry should consider. Are there any legal or legislative considerations?

Yes. The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) issued a directive for multi-factor authentication in the banking sector. We believe that the mortgage industry and the regulators are moving toward a place where mortgage companies will be subject to the same information security standard as the banking industry, meaning mortgage companies will need to implement this technology to maintain security compliance.

7. How do I know what MFA layers would be good for my mortgage business?

You can read more about MFA. For instance, read this buyer's guide for MFA products.

If you want to talk more about MFA, or any other vulnerability management solutions, please contact us. MortgageWorkSpace®’s cloud interface is a convenient entry point to your company that will help you manage your secure information. This secure portal provides you access to your team (by group, branch office, and/or department), their security, their devices, and data. You can control and manage your entire workforce from one web-accessible point with rich features like single-sign on, multi-factor authentication, and user application logs. This way, you can be sure you are keeping track of every aspect of your security.

We look forward to helping you protect your clients' and your network's information security.

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Topics: MortgageWorkSpace multi-factor authentication