American Banker: Account Closures Result from Lack of Customer Context

Once upon a time, before a bank closed a customer’s account due to suspicious-looking activity, an employee who knew that customer, such as a branch manager, was consulted who could provide some explanation for activity that looked sketchy….Now that the majority of banking takes place on a smartphone, all this is gone.”

-Penny Crosman, American Banker

 More and more customers are experiencing sudden bank account closures, as highlighted in a recent series in the New York Times. And this recent article in American Banker highlights that this is largely due to the lack of context in today’s digital banking. This issue is not just about numbers; it’s about real people and their (not so positive) interactions with financial institutions.

In the article, Refine’s CEO Uri Rivner points out the contributing factors to account closures: primarily the impersonal nature of digital banking, which lacks the human understanding once inherent in traditional banking relationships. 

“Most [transaction] anomalies are generated by perfectly legitimate life stories,” Rivner said. “For example, buying a house, selling a house, buying a car, doing a big construction project, starting a cash intensive job, doing construction or landscaping, getting a loan. These sort of things are happening at a certain point to almost everyone. But transaction-monitoring systems will see it as a red flag because it is anomalous. This is the root cause of why you see so many mistakes or false alarms.”

The article, enriched with expert opinions, delves into the potential of AI and data analytics in banking. It presents a future where technology and human insight collaborate, creating a more customer-centric, efficient financial environment.

Read the full article in American Banker (subscription required) >