May 3, 2023

WhatsApp Banking: Overcoming Privacy and Security Challenges

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Conversational artificial intelligence is revolutionizing the digital experience. Users' preferences are changing, and so are their needs. It is now very common to see that, increasingly, people prefer to communicate with their favorite brands directly, quickly and naturally through their favorite channels. Gone are the days when communication was one-way and limited: today there is the possibility of holding real conversations between brands and users, as if they were peers.

In this sense, the banking industry is no exception. Banking customers, who for years have been subjected to long waits, slow processes and half-baked solutions, today have changed their expectations. Like all users of digital services, banking customers also expect their queries and problems to be resolved quickly, easily and conversationally.

And if we ask ourselves what is the digital platform that is most used and adopted by users to communicate in 2023, there is only one correct answer: it is WhatsApp, the world's most popular instant messaging app. Because of this, more and more banks are choosing WhatsApp as their preferred way to communicate with their users.

WhatsApp offers endless possibilities for banks to implement a successful and responsive conversational banking strategy, and it is already an application that users love and understand.

What exactly is conversational banking?

As time goes by, technologies are changing and, as we mentioned before, this implies a transformation in the way people and companies communicate. 

We recently started talking about a new strategy called conversational banking, which employs the latest in Artificial Intelligence and Natural Language Processing (NLP) techniques to allow customers to interact with their bank through a highly advanced chatbot or virtual assistant.

Related Article: Conversational Banking: The bank account, now in WhatsApp

WhatsApp and its multiple possibilities

With WhatsApp, the range of options for automating customer service opens up. From customer acquisition to 24/7 customer support, WhatsApp offers various functionalities. Some of the most recurring ones are: 

  • Online account opening: Simplifying all kinds of initial management can help you engage your potential customer faster. Customers no longer want to have to go in person to stand in line at a bank branch or wait on the other end of the phone for an advisor. 

Today it is very valuable for potential customers to be able to manage their accounts by themselves, whenever and wherever they want. So why not help them open an account in the easiest and quickest way possible? With a conversational bot integrated to your banking platform, your new customers will be able to open their account in a few seconds through their favorite channel.

  • Balance inquiry, last movements, alias/CBU (Unique Banking Password) and account summary: Through the integration of a conversational AI chatbot to your internal system, your customers will be able to access all their banking information from any channel, at any time, and just by chatting with your bot. 

This way, they don't need to download a new app, log in and browse for information. They can simply ask via WhatsApp what they need and receive the answer immediately.

  • Proactive sending of promotions: Surely in your bank you implement different loyalty campaigns for your customers, such as promotions on special dates or determined stores. For this, you can take advantage of sending proactive WhatsApp notifications and remind your customers about current promotions.
  • Bill payments: Slow and endless payment processes are a thing of the past. Now, thanks to the integration between our conversational platform and home banking, your customers can quickly manage payments for water, electricity, gas, telephone or Internet access from their favorite messaging application. Just by saying "I want to pay for my bills", the bot will be activated and will guide them through each payment process on its corresponding platform, making it easier than ever!
  • Claims management: For customers, there is nothing more annoying than having a problem and not being able to communicate it. To make matters worse, phone lines are often very congested or consumers simply cannot identify the right number to dial.

To streamline this situation and offer solutions to customers, you can incorporate a conversational banking strategy that addresses complaints such as unrecognized charges, unblocking accounts or addressing any other financial issue with a single quick message via WhatsApp.

Also, through this integration, your customers can seamlessly switch from live chat to a human if necessary. This way, you can resolve complaints quickly, nimbly and easily, which facilitates your customers' processes and enhances their brand experience.

Related Article: WhatsApp Banking: how to implement an end-to-end conversational journey

The importance of security and privacy

In this day and age where technology is an essential part of our lives, secure and private communication channels are necessary, especially when it comes to the banking sector. Banking is an industry where sensitive and confidential information is exchanged, and privacy breaches can have serious consequences. Therefore, it is crucial to provide security and privacy to customers when it comes to bank customer service via WhatsApp.

For starters, WhatsApp is a messaging app that allows users to send text messages, voice messages, images, documents, and even make video calls and voice calls. Since WhatsApp uses end-to-end encryption, all messages sent and received through the app are only visible to the sender and recipient. This means that not even WhatsApp developers can see the content of messages, making it a secure platform for sharing sensitive information.

In addition, banking is one of the most targeted sectors by cybercriminals. Scammers often use a variety of methods to steal personal information, such as bank account details, social security numbers or credit card details. By providing secure and private communication channels, banks can ensure that no unauthorized parties can access their customers' personal and financial data. This helps prevent financial fraud, identity theft and other financial crimes that can cause significant harm to customers.

Secure messaging channels can help customers feel more secure and in control of their personal information. Customers interacting with the bank's customer service via WhatsApp can be assured that the information shared is only shared with authorized individuals, ensuring that their privacy is respected. This builds trust between customers and the bank, which can lead to repeat sponsorship or even referrals.

Ensuring security with Aivo Suite

Conversational banking is about conducting 24/7 conversational transactions that are secure, encrypted and increase customer satisfaction. At Aivo, we like to talk about automated conversational journeys with artificial intelligence. With Aivo Suite you can automate the customer journey through WhatsApp ensuring your customers instant solutions and unstructured, natural and fluid conversations.

In the financial industry, security is a crucial element that cannot be taken lightly. That's why at Aivo we take proactive measures to ensure that your customers' data remains secure at all times. 

Specifically, we obtained ISO 27001 and ISO 9000 certifications, two internationally recognized standards that verify the effectiveness and efficiency of the information security management system. In addition, at Aivo we use TLSv1.2 data transfer encryption and AES 256 encryption for our database, which provides an additional layer of security against potential breaches. 

In the event of an unforeseen incident, we have a disaster recovery plan in place to mitigate any potential damage and minimize downtime. At Aivo, we take customer privacy very seriously and strive to maintain the highest standards of data handling through compliance with key privacy regulations such as GDPR and LGPD. With Aivo, you can be assured that your sensitive financial data will remain safeguarded and protected at all times.

Bank security for your customers

When adopting WhatsApp as a customer service channel, banks must ensure maximum privacy and security for their customers. Some ways to achieve this are:

  • Two-factor authentication: Two-factor authentication adds an additional layer of security to customers' accounts by requiring a second form of authentication in addition to their passwords. In the case of WhatsApp, two-factor authentication can be enabled in the settings. In addition, banks should encourage their customers to activate this feature by sending notifications and reminders to ensure maximum security.
  • Biometric identification: The use of biometric identification, such as fingerprints or facial recognition, is becoming increasingly popular in the financial industry due to its high level of security. An example of this is the voice authentication used by Banorte, one of our clients. To identify its customers, the bank asks them to send a voice note with a specific phrase and, through voice biometrics technology, the bot validates the customer's identity and allows them to continue with the personalized service. This type of authentication is considered top security (level 4) because it allows identifying who is on the other side in a secure and accurate way. 
  • End-to-end encryption: End-to-end encryption ensures that only the sender and recipient of messages can access their content. This means that even WhatsApp itself cannot read messages exchanged between a bank and its customers. This feature provides unparalleled security and privacy to users.
  • Fraud alerts and proactive warnings: Finally, banks should make use of fraud alerts and proactive warnings to notify customers in case of any suspicious activity on their accounts. This could include notifications of logins from unrecognized devices or unusual transactions. Banks such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo have implemented these features in their mobile banking apps to alert customers of potential fraud, allowing them to act quickly to prevent further harm.

In conclusion, banks cannot overlook the importance of providing security and privacy to their customers when using WhatsApp as a communication channel for customer service. Two-factor authentication, biometric identification, end-to-end encryption, and fraud alerts and warnings are key features that must be implemented to ensure the highest level of security and privacy for customers. By implementing these features, banks can enhance their reputation for protecting customer information and ultimately build trust among customers.

Offer customer service via WhatsApp in a secure manner. 

Offering secure and private communication channels is essential for banks, especially when it comes to customer care through digital channels such as WhatsApp. Having a secure messaging channel is crucial for safeguarding customers' personal and financial data and, therefore, their trust in your bank.

Fortunately, WhatsApp is a viable channel to interact with customers and provide them with assistance in a private and secure way. If you are interested in implementing a secure conversational banking strategy, schedule a demo with our team.

Are you looking for new ways to improve your CX?

Our customer service solutions powered by conversational AI can help you deliver an efficient, 24/7 experience  to your customers. Get in touch with one of our specialists to further discuss how they can help your business.