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Disadvantages and advantages of online banking

OVERVIEW On ONLINE BANKING

Information technology has become the platform of banking as a whole, especially of online banking. Though this is an entirely new term for out country, due to the intense competition its application is increasing rapidly. Now a day, it has become almost obligatory on the part of the banks to implement this. The online banking services that we are getting now are limited to some extent in most cases. But it is expected that in near future we are going to get the fullest service from online banking. We are also expecting that the influence of online banking will be greatly upbeat for both the clients and service providers.

INTRODUCTION

E-Banking is defined as the automated delivery of new and traditional banking products and services directly to customers through electronic and interactive communication channels.

Online banking (Internet banking) is a term used for performing transactions, payments etc. over the internet through a bank's secure website. This can be very useful, especially for banking outside bank hours (which tend to be very short) and banking from anywhere where internet access is available. In most cases a web browser such as Internet Explorer or Mozilla Firefox is utilized and any normal internet connection is suitable. It is an umbrella term for the process by which a customer may perform banking transactions electronically without visiting a brick-and-mortar institution. With the help of E-Banking customers can access their banks without having to be physically present at the bank branch.

In Bangladesh the idea of online banking was conceived in 1996 but the commercial operation started in 2001. Banks use a variety of services for Online Banking such as PC banking, Home Banking, Electronic Banking or Internet Banking. These systems offer certain advantages over traditional banking methods.

Advantages of Online Banking

For Consumers:

The privacy of customers.

Online services are available for consumers 24 hours daily during the whole week.

Customers might save time and efforts of doing their finance transactions.

It will be easy for them to view all information they need clearly and simply.

Searching of any branch of a bank will be accessibly by online users.

For Banks:

One way of attracting more customers is to use their services.

Increasing the bank’s reputation around the world is well known by many people.

It doesn’t need to employ lots of suffer or bankers to deal with customers directly.

Banks can deal simply with their branches all over the world with one network.

Disadvantages of Online Banking

For consumers

Some people feel uncomfortable to provide their passwords or any kind of information about their funds over the internet.

Some websites might be difficult for consumers for the first time to check their finance.

It is possible for banks to update their websites, which needs from consumers to type in again their data.

It is necessary to have knowledge and skills on using the Internet.

For Banks

Banks may require big amount of money to establish a website with attractive features.

They may lose their information if the network is damaged with other branches.

Hacking and viruses will cause problems for online banking, which could brake and damage the information.

Types of online banking

The common assumption is that Internet banking is the only method of online banking. However, this is not strictly the case, as several types of services are currently available:

PC Banking:

The forerunner to Internet banking has been around since the late 1980’s and is still widely used today. Individual banks provide software which is loaded on to an SME’s office computer. The SME can then access their bank account via a modem and telephone link to the bank. Access is not necessarily via the Internet.

Internet Banking:

Using a Web browser, a user can access their account, once the bank’s application server has validated the user’s identity.

Digital TV Banking:

Using the standard digital reception equipment (set top box and remote control); users can access their bank account. Abbey National and HSBC services are available via digital TV providers. One of its main selling points is that no account details are transmitted via the World Wide Web. This service is absent in our country.

Telephone (Mobile) Banking:

It includes the banking through using the Telephone operator whether public or private with wire or wireless. It’s a form of e-banking that helps the household who have no facility to access Internet and computer.

Now phone and online banking in Bangladesh only offer services such as balance check and request for statement. But the mobile banking allows fund transfer, paving the way for money transaction through cell phones across the country

Text phone (SMS) Banking:

Many of the national and multinational banks have introduced this service to allow customers with text phones to check their balance, pay bills and transfer money.

PART TWO

ONLINE BANKING Products & Services of

Different banks in Bangladesh

Eastern Bank Limited

Credit Card:

The brand name of credit card of EBL is ‘Simple Credit Card’. The basic features of EBL credit cards are: its free for its clients for all time, it can be used for balance transfer, mobile alert facilities, it has world wide acceptability, Immediate cash advance service, risk assurance program, convenient payment option and global emergency assistance service etc.

Debit Card:

EBL has introduced the Debit Card for the savings Account holder who can use it to meet immediate obligation if he/she has enough balance to his/her bank account just after going to their ATM booths available with its each branch and sharing with others.

‘Life-Style Card’ and ‘Cool Card’:

These Cards are introduced only for the students for a soft condition but having a great exposure.

Phone Banking:

EBL Providing Phone Banking facilities to its clients as a part of online banking facilities.

SMS Banking:

EBL uses the SMS Banking to provide services to the grass-root level customers. Here a fixed SMS code is fixed for each specific service.

DHAKA BANK LIMITED

Phone Banking:

The DBL has brought a great change in Phone Banking. Now this facility is getting so popularity.

Internet Banking:

All its ATM booths as well as branches are connected through Internet for which the any information among branches can be transferred within a moment.

SMS Banking:

The DBL is using the SMS Banking to provide services to the grass-root level customers. Here a fixed SMS code fixed for each specific service.

International Card:

It’s a card which is accepted World-wide for Purchase & Cash Withdrawals. It’s a great service for its customers.

Debit Card:

It has been providing Debit Card facilities to its customers who can meet their money withdrawal matters at any ATM booths of its own operated or sharing with others to provide the security of its clients’ money.

Credit Card:

The Dhaka Bank has been providing the Credit Card facilities to its customer’s interest. It’s named as ‘Dhaka Bank VISA Credit Card’.

TRUST BANK LIMITED

Credit Card:

The Trust Bank uses the ‘VISA Credit Card’ for Local, International and Dual Currencies. Its one of the bank’s personal banking services.

Debit Card:

The Trust Bank uses the ‘Trust VISA-Electron Debit Card’ for local, international and dual currencies. It is one of the bank’s automated services to the customers.

Phone Banking:

It has such services for its customers.

Internet Banking:

It deals all the foreign transactions through the Internet Banking.

SMS Banking:

It deals with the grass-root clients through providing the SMS Banking services.

DUTCH-BANGLA BANK LIMITED

Bangladesh Bank data shows that there are about 600 ATMs in the country. The number was less than 300 a year ago. Currently, Dutch-Bangla Bank Limited has the largest network with 260 ATMs, with up to 12 new booths coming every month. Thirteen banks can use DBBL booths. Besides, the bank has an agreement with Q-Cash, allowing ATM cardholders of Mercantile Bank and Trust Bank to take cash from the same booths. Also, Dutch-Bangla Bank clients can use all Q-Cash outlets. The bank has a similar agreement with E Cash that runs 24 booths across the country. Now a day, they are providing truly Online Banking.

Credit Card:

The Dutch-Bangla Bank is only the bank which has more ATM booths than any other banks operating their business in Bangladesh. The ‘DBBL-Nexus Credit Card’ is one of the medium which it permits to withdraw a certain limits of money from its booths.

Debit Card:

It is another product through which the Card holder is able to withdraw the money amount from his/her account. It’s known as the ‘DBBL-Nexus Debit Card’.

Phone Banking:

They are very successful with the Phone banking (Telephone and Cell Phone).

Internet Banking:

About 80% of their e-banking is based on the internet Banking.

SMS Banking:

They also have SMS banking for the clients who are out of the Internet connection and they can have access to get the immediate service with just an SMS.

ARAB BANGLADESH BANK LIMITED

Debit Card:

AB Bank uses the ‘AB Bank Visa Debit Card’.

Credit Card:

The name of AB Bank’s Credit Card is the ‘AB Bank VISA EASICredit Card’.

Phone Banking:

It uses phone banking as part of e-banking to run its online banking transactions.

Internet Banking:

The bank provides this service to its customers with a little limit.

Western Union Money Transfer:

It is also the member of Western Union Money Transfer for which it’s able to transfer money from one country to another within a moment.

BANK ASIA

Credit Card:

The name of the Bank Asia’s Credit Card is ‘Bank Asia Credit Card [MasterCard]’.

Debit Card:

The name of the Debit Card of this bank is ‘Bank Asia Debit Card’.

Mobile Banking:

It uses Mobile banking as part of e-banking to run its online banking transactions.

Internet Banking:

The bank provides this service to its customers with a little limit.

SMS Banking:

It uses the SMS banking to deal with its grass-root clients.

BRAC BANK LIMITED

Mobile Banking:

It uses Mobile banking as part of e-banking to run its online banking transactions.

Internet Banking:

The bank provides this service to its customers with a little limit.

SMS Banking:

It uses the SMS banking to deal with its grass-root clients.

Debit Card:

The name of Debit Card of the BRAC BANK is ‘BRAC Bank Debit Card’. It’s allowed for the customers who have only the savings account and can withdraw only the amount belongs to its account balance.

Credit Card:

It introduces the 0% Credit Card named ‘BRAC Bank Credit Card [MasterCard]’ which is undoubtedly an exclusive offer to all which is applicable for first 3 months interest free for all retail purchases. It charges no interest for balance transfer. It also allows 10 more supplementary cards for all the relatives.

HONGKONG & SANGHAI BANKING CORPORATION (HSBC)

Credit Card:

Although a limited number, a short listed Credit Cards are using by a few Bangladeshis who have a strong Credit worthiness. It permits a certain limits to withdraw beyond one’s balance.

Debit Card:

It’s using very much in Bangladesh. A number of ATM booths are available in Bangladesh including Dhaka and Chittagong.

Mobile Banking:

It uses Mobile banking as part of e-banking to run its online banking transactions. But its not applicable in Bangladesh yet.

Internet Banking:

Each and every branch of the HSBC is connected through the internet and about 80% of their e-banking is based on the internet Banking.

SMS Banking:

They also have SMS banking for the clients who are out of the Internet connection and they can have access to get the immediate service with just an SMS.

STANDARD CHARTERED BANK

Credit Card:

It permits to use the Credit Cards to its customers.

Debit Card:

The customers are using Debit Cards and having great facilities with international bank.

Internet Banking:

Most of the services of this bank is operating through the Internet.

PART THREE

Findings & Analysis

INDEPTH ‘SWOT’ ANALYSIS

STRENGTHS:

 Diversification: These ten banks offer various online banking services as to attract the customers of different groups of people.

 Lower cost advantage: As the banks bring in bulks of customers, their operational costs go down.

 Multinational marketing capabilities: Being global bank, HSBC and Standard Chartered Bank enjoys the multinational marketing capabilities. They have been successful in attracting savings of savers and investors and lending a large volume of loans with the help of their online banking facilities.

 Start-up may take time: In order to register for a bank's online program, we will probably have to provide ID and sign a form at a bank branch. If the bank is satisfied after proper scrutiny, the bank will permit us to start internet banking which may take a few days.

WEAKNESSES:

 Centralization: These banks managements are mostly centralized & follows top-down approach, decisions come form corporate branch and sometimes it takes much time to get the approval for credit card, where it could have been done faster. Since, It’s competitive market, competitors can take this opportunity to move ahead of it.

 Manual works: Although the banking system is computerized of the banks; simultaneously records are kept manually for auditing purpose, such as using rubber chop, giving signatures, writing on forms etc. Therefore, these manual works destroy the ‘value’ that the organization created significantly.

 Costly: Still most of the banks online banking facilities are somewhat costly. As a result they are yet to be succeeded to bring a large number of customers under the umbrella of E-Banking.

OPPORTUNITIES:

 Many untapped regions over the country: Banks can attract even more customers by expanding its branches to other districts or regions and at the same time ensuring online banking service in Bangladesh, and thereby increase their market share & profitability.

 Innovation: Banks’ innovative online banking products would be able to satisfy various customers’ needs & thereby would be able to reach different target segments.

 Credit Card Facility: At present, a particular segment has a potential demand for credit cards, so the banks can utilize this opportunity to drag that particular segment before any of its competitors do. Although few banks already providing this facility, but the demand is still there as the existing facility is not sufficient comparing to the need.

THREATS:

 Duplication of the HSBC’s service: Existing multinational & local banks could copy the banks’ financial services, so they have to move ahead of others faster.

 Emerging Competition: New local and multinational banks or other financial institutions could emerge as the banking industry in Bangladesh is still growing, and become a threat to the existing online banking service providers.

 Political instability: As Bangladesh’s political situation is unstable; it affects banking industry as well. So, it means the banks may face fluctuating demand for their products too.

Security System used by the Banks

Most of the lading banks follow the following security system for their online banking.

 Software:

Online banking service of these banks employs the 128-bit Secure Socket Layer (SSL), which is one of the strongest encryption technologies; most commonly used by large-scale online merchants, banks, and brokerages worldwide. All online sessions between customers and the banks are protected by up to 128-bit encryption, which best protects customers’ information against disclosure to third parties.

TPII software operates on the UNIX platform, which is known to be the world's most secure and redundant operating system providing multiple users and multiple tasking facilities and Database is maintained in Oracle (RDBMS), the world's most secure database system.

 

 Encryption is used to protect information:

Encryption is a method of scrambling customers’ information to protect its transmission across the Internet. Encryption transforms data into an unreadable form, and decryption reverses that process. Both encryption and decryption require the use of a special code, usually referred to as a key. The encryption of data provides a strong degree of protection against tampering while data is moving through the Internet.  

 

 Cookies are not used for this service:

A cookie is information that a web site puts on customers’ hard disk that it can remember something about customer at a later time. This mechanism allows the server to store its own information about a user on the user's own computer. These ten banks do not use cookies for this service.

 ATM Hardware:

a) Racal brand 128 bit Host Security Module (HSM) through which card information is encrypted, decrypted along with PIN generation. This device is used worldwide to maintain and relay highly secure information as an exchange platform. After HSM has verified and authorized the PIN and decrypts it, customers receive funds from ATM. The HSM is also responsible for generating ATM Card PINs for the TPII.

b) Each ATM has a built-in 64-bit encryption device for ensuring maximum security during transactions.

c) Three different ATM models are currently in use. They are the 1064ix (stand-alone ATM), 1071ix (Through-the-Wall ATM) & 1072ix (Through-the-Wall) models. Each of the ATMs can capacitate up to four cash cassettes, of which, each one may hold up to 2,000 cash notes. Cash loading in ATMs are based entirely on usage frequency of the machines.

d) All ATM booths have 24/7 CCTV surveillance systems to keep records of transactions taking place for a period of over one year. Moreover, each booth has a hot-telephone link affixed for troubleshooting and instant help-desk services.

Problems OF implementatinG online banking

Infrastructural deficiency: [WEAKNESS]

To implement online banking in our state, the infrastructure is necessary. For this we need availability of electricity supply and telecommunication. Without developing these we can’t develop this online banking system properly.

Budget allocation: [WEAKNESS]

The software is vary intricate to develop because e lacking of apposite in-house. In this regard, banks are to rely on software developing concerns at extreme costs.

Hackers:

The hacking, the serious crime of computer causes the injury and hazard to the security and safety of users of computer involved in online technology. As a result, hackers are the influential troubles of users of online business of a bank. Online banking services will not be feasible for an economy as most people are illiterate. They are beyond the scope of normal banking service. Micro-credit industry is now not only providing small credit but also mobilizing savings.

The big problems are in the regulatory framework: [WEAKNESS]

1. Lack of full convertibility. Bangladesh citizen cannot have access to the world wide online banking service due to regulatory restrictions.

2. The reserve position will not allow free inter-country fund transfer.

Risk: [THREAT]

The credit information available for banks is often wrong, so it is very difficult to check whether the customer has difficult on a card issued by another bank. A data bank is required to see the list of the defaulters. More unconventional banks fill that gap in the market, trying to grab a share of the internet money, on the premises that they represent the richest and most educated part of the population.

Privacy:

Another central issue to the consumer is privacy. Database marketing is nothing but the manipulation of data over which customers feel that they want to have some kind of control. The general rule is that consumer privacy rights should be respected. Individuals should easily opt out of online marketing as an extension of their right to be removed from junk mail lists.

Unemployment: [THREAT]

One pre-conceived widespread idea is computers will displace labor. This is a matter of empirical study. Productivity and profitability are closely interrelated terms. The experienced excess staffs can be easily absorbed in to the expanding financial market. The unemployment will only be structural unemployment since the displaced labor will sooner have later acquired the necessary computer skills and thus become more efficient.

Cost-effectiveness: [Weakness]

Another misconception is that it is not cost effective. None of the banks that have designed properly on automation plan and implemented it with proper cost benefit analysis became less superior. Actually the acceptance of financial modernization is a matter of vision to the future. Unless computers become cheaper and online facilities become within the reach of middle class, they will remain unfamiliar with internet, and will thus avert them.

Role of Government

This is particularly important for countries like Bangladesh where very little has been done in development these technologies and skills to promote and support online banking. The government can take the following policies to promote online banking in our country:

The intergovernmental agreement for harmonizing the rules and regulations that can help in smooth transformation of the world economy and expansion of a unified world market.

The regulations should simply foster competition, protect intellectual property and privacy, and prevent fraud to do businesses under whatever terms they agree upon. An international uniform commercial code is needed to simplify and encourage electronic commerce under consistent rules and rights.

Govt. can undertake perfect initiatives to construct feasible, platform of information technology within affordable capacity. Financial allocation should be more widen for global standard banking technology.

Adequate number of bank employee will have both computer and banking aptitude and cognizance, suitable in the banking perspective to improve the banking sector.

“Tele-communication” sector is pre-conditions to make fastest online banking services. Unfortunately a tale-communication service of govt. is yet to reach to remote and rural area.

RECOMMENDATIONS

These banks should -----------

 Do frequent marketing research:

The management of the banks should regularly administer marketing research activities in order to keep a regular track of satisfaction levels. As customer expectations and satisfaction are not static figures regular research at sufficient intervals should be conducted.

 Handle complains effectively:

The banks should actively manage the complaints of various customers and encourage customers to give feedback about the services. The management should collect document complaints & use that information to identify dissatisfied customers, correct individual problems where possible and identify common service failure points.

 Focus on segmentation strategies:

The bank should concentrate on the various demographic segments that are currently not very satisfied with the banks services. Products services should be tailored for these segments. Appropriate research and surveys should be designed to find out the requirements of these dissatisfied segments.

 Do Relationship Marketing:

The banks should focus more on existing customers in order to build strong and loyal relationship with them as the survey showed that satisfied customers more aptly or certainly recommends the bank to friends and relatives. Thus the power of relationship will foster Positive Word of Oral Communication and will attract new customers at a lower cost.

 Establish more ATM booths:

From the survey, it is clear that customers are not very happy regarding ATM’s locations. So, sufficient number of ATM booths should be established in different location to reach out the customers even further and thereby satisfying their demand.

 Introduce Credit Card Facility:

While handling customers over the counter & also over telephone, a certain demand for credit card facility was noticed strongly. We think, if the banks introduce this facility, more customers will be attracted & therefore, they will achieve greater market share.

 Reduce Manual works to minimum:

Although many of the ten banks do automation, still there are many things which are done manually in order to tract any errors or transaction, especially in emergency such as system failure etc. As a result, so much time is spent on this type of manual maintenance, which reduces ‘value’ on delivering services. Thus, it hampers efficiency on delivering faster services.

 Educate customers in using Phone banking service:

A few banks have introduced phone banking service or automatic telephone banking (ATB) in order to fulfill general customer needs and queries quickly, without interrupting employees. However, customers seemed reluctant to use this facility due to fear of machine usage or difficulty in remembering the seventeen digit numbers.

 Introduce SWIFT:

Autonomous Banking culture, reducing dependence on manual service, should be in abundance irrespective of govt. and non-govt. organization in association with `SWIFT' to bring about the whole banking service for massive well being of people.

 Ensuring proper training to the employees:

Training should be imparted to the existing IT personnel. 'the new recruits for IT personnel should be provided with relevant education background.

WRAPPING UP…

Online Banking sets off the journey with a mission of reaching to target group of people across our country. The globalization facilitates the extinction of untidy and troublesome services in order to consolidate the very variegated, faster as well exquisite services to keep the people in regular touch of modernization. Considering this decision, banks and financial concerns took some welcome move recently. Usually all private owned banks from abroad coupled with a few local banks in collaboration with domestic support launched the trend of on-line banking. The completely refurbished banking sector stresses effort to spread this culture of banking.

In this connection, only a few banks establish the timely steps by eradicating all sorts of strains and inconvenience in all respect. Since the financial services needs to be very optimum certain not scattered to foster the belief and reliance of people over banking sector. Thereby, the very exclusive and classic service procedure can be accommodated amidst of integration of joint collaboration with modern system. Alongside, the existing banking sector pays much heed and concentration to the fastest growth and development of Online Banking System. In this regard, Bangladesh is still in the backseat whereas the rest of the world is burning in flame of excellence at large. Despite the ascendancy of irresistible constraints, inconsistency that engulf the origin of the online trading, we are extremely aspiring and sanguine of prompt and illustrious development of online banking as rapidly as possible.

Therefore, the banks should move ahead of its rivals by applying the recommendations provided above. Certainly, it will help reducing the gap (or dissatisfaction) & retaining existing customers. And, once this dissatisfied customers become satisfied, it will not only help to retain existing customers, but it will also help to drag new customers through positive word-of-mouth communications. Also, it will help to attract new segments with different needs. Many customers are dissatisfied due to some areas of incompetent services. So, in order to sustain in the highly competitive banking industry, the banks should take this issue under serious consideration. Thus, they should focus on increasing the market share by providing quality service as promised & at the same time, providing new products/services that would satisfy customer need even more; creating a competitive advantage over its competitors.

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