News

September 11, 2014

Compliance management – put a focus on the foundation

When it comes to regulatory compliance, most of the spotlight is given to “what’s new” – whether it’s new laws, regulatory changes or recent enforcement actions. But ignoring the importance of tried-and-true foundational elements can pose equal or greater risks to your institution’s compliance performance.

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September 8, 2014

When Good Compliance Goes Bad

In 2014, there are plenty of well-intentioned banks under enforcement actions – those that have always run operations in full observance of applicable legal and regulatory requirements. This leaves many bank executives wondering just how things can go so wrong so fast, and how they can avoid a similar path. 

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August 22, 2014

Why IT Needs to Be Part of the Regulatory Compliance Debate

It is untenable to argue for a laxer regulatory regime. Regulatory compliance is less onerous on consumers when it is executed in a more efficient manner — and that means by leveraging technology. Why Continuity Control's recently closed $10 million round of of funding is significant.

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August 21, 2014

New Haven financial compliance firm raises $10M

Continuity Control said it has raised $10 million in growth funding from an equity firm and two other entities. The company makes a compliance management system for banks and credit unions. Continuity raised the funds from River Cities Capital Funds, BancVue, and the family of IBM founder Thomas Watson.

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August 8, 2014

How to survive rising compliance costs

A slower regulatory year should bring community banks some relief from the cost and staffing burdens associated with compliance, right?
Well, not exactly. The Banking Compliance Index (BCI) for the second quarter of 2014 shows a slower pace of regulatory change – but no equivalent drop in associated cost and staffing needs.
The results are unsettling. If compliance costs are rising during this rare period of lighter regulatory growth, what’s going to happen when new regulations, inevitably, start pouring in again?

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August 6, 2014

Md.’s SECU Deploys Compliance Software

The $2.8 billion State Employees Credit Union of Maryland said it now is using a cloud-based automated compliance management system from Continuity Control of New Haven, Conn. In addition to interpreting and automating compliance with regulatory changes, the Continuity Control CMS automates business processes such as tracking annual training requirements and disclosure updates that can be leveraged across SECU’s branches and divisions, the company and credit union said in their announcement Monday.

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August 1, 2014

Trend: We've Got To Start Meeting Like This

The biggest trend in credit union strategic planning over recent years has been considering it more as a process than an event.
"The board model that has worked for decades is seeing some challenges," Greenawalt said. "Credit unions need to add sophistication to their boards and they need to add more sophistication to their organizations overall. Credit unions are recruiting more technically savvy, more progressive board members, and they are investing more in training those directors."

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July 18, 2014

Survey Roundup: Disconnect Between Regulators, Banks

Banking Burden: Community banks needed to devote on average an extra 517 hours to keep up with new compliance requirements in the second quarter, which is equivalent to 1.48 full-time employees and a 7% increase compared to the first quarter of 2014, according to the latest Banking Compliance Index put out by compliance management firm Continuity Control.

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July 16th, 2014

Community banks' 2Q compliance costs rise

New Haven's Continuity Control, a provider of financial compliance software, said community banks across the country spent an additional $34,755 complying with 75 new regulatory changes in the second quarter.

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July 1st, 2014

@ContinuityCTRL Growing in Iowa City

A New Haven, CT, based financial compliance company is looking to add to its staff, including in Iowa's Creative Corridor.  Continuity Control, with three employees currently working from the IC CoLab, is hiring software engineers and compliance staff as the company expands its client base.  Continuity is poised for growth, after increasing revenue by more than 300 percent and adding nearly 100 new clients in the last 18 months.

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June 13th, 2014

Weekly Wrap: Small Bank Darwinism; The Case for Tiered Regulation

SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST: Community banks have plenty of opportunities to succeed despite the challenges posed by regulation and higher technological and staffing costs, according to Continuity Control's Andy Greenawalt. 

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June 25, 2014

Noses In, Fingers Out: Webinar's Advice for Directors

“It’s a good thing to be a nosy director,” Perdue told attendees of the New Haven, Conn., financial technology firm’s webinar, “Board and Executive Oversight — Examiner Expectations.” “If you’re not ready to ask why, why, why, then you’re not doing your job as a director.”

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View the Webinar Recording

Monday, June 9th, 2014

The Real Reason Community Banks Are Closing

Conventional wisdom holds that community banks are doomed because of rising regulatory, technological and staffing costs. But upon examining the data, this theory doesn't hold true.

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June 9, 2014

Compliance Scorecards – Providing Visibility to Your Blind Spots

“Can you provide an accurate picture of your areas of risk?” That question from an examiner that can unnerve the most resilient compliance officer. And, right now, compliance officers across the U.S. should expect this very question come their next examination. It turns out these examinations aren’t just about what the institution is doing right; they’re also about managing and mitigating the risk of doing something wrong.

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June 6, 2014

Survey Roundup: More Companies Warming to Idea of Cyberinsurance

A look at some recent surveys and reports dealing with risk and compliance issues. Small Bank Risk Not Worse Than Large Banks. Smaller banks with assets of between $100 million and $130 million don’t have a greater risk of failure than large banks, a report from financial technology company Continuity Control found.

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May 15, 2014

Excessive Regulation Detracts from Financial Literacy

Today's harsh regulatory environment is sapping community banks of resources — time, money, and staffers — that they previously devoted to financial literacy efforts. As a result, financial education responsibilities are increasingly falling on the shoulders of parents and schools — both of which may be ill-equipped to handle the challenge.

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May 14, 2014

The time to catch up on compliance is now

If your bank is still struggling to catch up with all of the regulations added to the books in 2013, now is the time to do it. The first quarter of 2014 gave community banks a tiny breather as the pace of regulatory change slowed some. Though the abatement will likely be short-lived, there are actions community banks should take now to better prepare for the heavy regulatory quarters that lie ahead. Here are a few tips:

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May 1, 2014

The Economics of Regulatory Compliance – What is the True Cost?

Regulatory compliance is one of the fastest growing non-interest expenses in an institution's budget, with costs rising at a rate of 15% - 18% per year. This article will provide valuable perspective on how directors need to look at the true cost of compliance – and its impact on performance. It will also provide very useful guidance on proven strategies and tactics the bank should be employing to address the regulatory burden head which will result in sustainable, measurable cost savings.

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May 1, 2014

Will Your Compliance Management System Pass Muster?

Examiners are placing more and more scrutiny on how banks are managing regulatory compliance. As of late, expectations have escalated including enforcement actions specifically mentioning inadequate compliance management systems (CMS). In this article we will dissect the recent enforcement actions to get a clear picture which contrasts how today’s enforcement climate is very different from years past, and to provide a clear recipe for success in establishing an effective CMS. We will also tackle fundamental questions such as: In-house or outsource CMS?

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April 23, 2014

Compliance Environment Heating Up

Based on results from first quarter 2014, the current forecast for financial institutions everywhere indicates a regulatory warming trend with a chance of increasing enforcement activity in the months ahead. Such was the prediction during a recent Quarterly Regulatory Compliance Briefing webinar sponsored by Continuity Control, a compliance management system for credit unions and banks.

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April 20, 2014

Credit Unions Report Increasing Exam Scrutiny

Enforcement actions by bank and credit union regulators increased during the first quarter of 2014.
“When it comes to enforcement actions, all things old are new again,” said Pam Perdue, EVP of regulatory insight. “Issues involving the Bank Secrecy Act and safety and soundness dominated examiners’ agendas.”

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April 18, 2014

Survey Roundup: Rogue IT Activity, Consumer Data Worries

Compliance regulators issued 165 enforcement actions against community banking institutions in the first quarter of 2014, a 23% increase from the fourth quarter of 2013. The Banking Compliance Index by compliance management systems company Continuity Control found the average community bank needed the equivalent of 1.69 extra full-time employees and spent an additional $37,621 to cope with just the extra regulatory load.

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April 15, 2014

Compliance Demands Drive Automation Uptick

Growing compliance demands also are growing business for vendors who provide automated compliance help.
For example, Continuity Control said it has more than tripled its client base and revenue in the past 18 months.

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March 24, 2014

Why CUs must be ‘excellent at compliance’ to thrive

If any topic can crush mobile banking in today's FI industry, compliance is your sledge hammer. In yet another year at CUNA's GAC, compliance dominated many conversations and presentations throughout the DC Convention Center. Even though credit unions seem to be hitting on all cylinders right now, there's that pesky thorn in the side of this industry called regulation overload.

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March 3, 2014

CUBroadcast Nearly Complete Coverage of 2014 GAC in D.C.  (Part 1)

Record attendance, an overwhelming positive vibe, and lots of business going down were the themes of the 2014 CUNA Governmental Affairs Conference. Mike Lawson interviewed many attendees in this CU Broadcast episode including Andy Greenawalt of Continuity Control.

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March 1, 2014

7 Mistakes that Drive Up Compliance Costs

The cost of compliance continues to escalate and has become one of the fastest growing non-interest expense items pressuring already tight margins. These costs are particularly difficult for community banks to withstand. In this article we  outline seven common mistakes community banks make that actually exasperate this issue by unnecessarily driving up the cost of regulatory compliance. Included are specific steps that will save what a bank spends on compliance and explain how to buffer the institution from future increases - no matter what the regulatory environment has in store for us.

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February 26, 2014

Gadgets Galore Pack GAC Exhibit Hall

Whether you’re searching for a solution to improve asset liability management, mobile banking services or personal financial management, this year's GAC will be packed with hands-on demonstrations, virtual tours, webinars and other information about new gadgets and top tech tools.

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February 25, 2014

Vendor Says Compliance Flow Under Control: Onsite at GAC

Credit unions are in pretty good shape despite the flood of regulations that continues to wash over the industry, including the new qualified mortgage rules from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

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January 31, 2014

Banking compliance in 2014: Lessons learned & looking ahead

When it comes to regulatory compliance, 2014 is poised to deliver a tough love message: shape up or ship out. Harsh? Perhaps. Accurate and honest? You better believe it.

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Friday, January 31st, 2014

Fewer New Rules, More Scrutiny Expected in 2014

For some, 2013 may be remembered as the toughest regulatory year on record. New regulation will likely slow in 2014, but scrutiny is expected to rise.

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Monday, January 27th, 2014

Community banks spent $150K more on compliance last year, survey finds

Community banks faced a challenging year of regulatory oversight in 2013, according to a new report from Continuity Control, committing an additional $150,000 and two employees to ensure compliance.

Bob Palmer, president of the Community Bankers Association of Ohio, said the analysis from Continuity Control confirms what Ohio’s smaller financial institutions have been saying.

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Friday, January 24th, 2014

Survey Roundup: Regulators Flex Muscles, Top Insurance Risks

2013 was the toughest regulatory year on record for community banks, according to the the Q4 Banking Compliance Index (BCI)

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Friday, January 17th, 2014

2014 Connecticut Economic Outlook

Another New Haven tech company to watch is Continuity Control, which expects to double its 25-person workforce this year, according to Andy Greenawalt, the company’s chief executive officer and founder.

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Friday, January 17th, 2014

Regulation: Killing Community Banks?

A recent report from Continuity Control, a New Haven, Conn.-based provider of compliance management system, says that community banks grappled with the toughest regulatory year on record in 2013, with an average of 61 regulatory changes each quarter.

"Many community financial institutions continue to rely on one or two individuals and antiquated processes to manage compliance," says Pam Perdue, Executive Vice President, Regulatory Insight, at Continuity Control and former Federal Examiner, said in the report. "It's become untenable for an institution to keep up with all of these changes using current methods. For many banks, they are increasingly discovering that updating their technology can solve the problem better, faster and cheaper."

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Thursday, January 16th, 2014

More regulations, enforcement actions for community banks

Continuity Control, which compiles a banking compliance index, said a 22 percent increase in regulatory changes and a 5 percent increase in enforcement actions required the average community bank to hire the equivalent of more than two full-time compliance employees at a cost of $150,000 during the year.

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Wednesday, January 8th, 2014

Role of Compliance Officer Takes Hard Left

In an environment characterized by a plethora of new laws and burgeoning enforcement actions, compliance officers today must operate as business catalysts, helping their credit unions grow within the rigors of a rapidly changing regulatory landscape, according to Andy Greenawalt, founder and CEO of Continuity Control, a New Haven, Conn.-based financial technology company.

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Saturday, December 13th, 2013

Preparing for Compliance 2.0

“Compliance officers must look at things with a critical eye and have a mindset of possibilities,” said Greenawalt during his Wednesday webinar titled “Compliance Officer 2.0 - Are You Ready?

“Changing your thinking is absolutely imperative to the survival of your institution and your industry,” Greenawalt said.

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Monday, December 9th, 2013

Compliance Officer 2.0: What’s Changed & Why

In the last decade, virtually every aspect of banking has changed. Yet, one conversation – a very critical one – has yet to happen. The one about compliance management. As the regulatory burden has grown for community banks, the role of the compliance officer has been transformed.

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Thursday, November 21st, 2013

More Small Banks Show Willingness to Sell

Nearly a quarter of bankers surveyed (from banks with $1 billion to $20 billion in assets) expect to become sellers in 2014 as challenges and regulatory scrutiny rise. More than a third of executives said 5% to 10% of operating costs are tied to regulatory compliance; 37% said the figure ranges from 11% to 20%. 

Besides spending dollars on compliance, executives are forced to devote time to this area, says Pam Perdue, chief compliance strategist at Continuity Control. Unfortunately, this could lead to regulation fatigue. "Some banks are sort of becoming numb to the regulatory response," she says. "If you are in a boxing match, you can only get hit so many times until you don't feel it anymore."

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Wednesday, November 20th, 2013

Credit Unions Under Regulatory Pressure

In contrast to current meteorological trends, predictions for the coming regulatory climate show escalating temperatures with little chance of relief.

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Monday, November 18th, 2013

The future of compliance automation is here, almost

The fact that most community banks have skated along with in-house systems and technology solutions that only address parts of the problem comes as no surprise, says Andy Greenawalt, founder and CEO of Continuity Control, which has launched an online compliance solution designed to address this problem. He compares the situation to a driver with snow or mud stuck in his or her wheels throwing off the tire’s balance; all seems well until the driver speeds up, and then the car begins to vibrate and seems on the verge of collapse.

“Bankers had a system that worked for a slowly changing environment that was lightly scrutinized,” he says. But with mounting regulations and rapid changes, he continues, “the system simply broke.”

Although many compliance solutions address pieces of the regulatory puzzle, the real problem is that they don’t tackle the problem from a high enough altitude. What’s critical, says Greenawalt, is managing the entire regulatory lifecycle.

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Thursday, November 14th, 2013

Cultivate Best Compliance Practices

Continuity Control's Perdue says nearly 12% of community financial institutions facing reg action of some kind.

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Thursday, November 14th, 2013

Reg Environment Hot, Getting Hotter

Continuity Control sees scrutiny moving downstream to smaller financial institutions.

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Thursday, November 7th, 2013

Doing Compliance Differently

In an effort to get compliance under control, forward-thinking bankers are applying new strategies to ease their burdens.  Many are implementing intelligent technology-based systems that improve how regulatory changes are interpreted and managed, that reduce resource requirements and that foster a culture of compliance across the organization.

“Banking has always been a regulated environment, but it’s kind of on steroids these days. I either had to increase my full-time employee base to keep up with and implement all the regulatory changes, or take a completely different approach, one where we could leverage technology and work with somebody that offered us a team of experts.”
                                    ~ Robert Hemsath, president and CEO of Security First Bank in California

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Thursday, November 7th, 2013

How to Survive the Most Oppressive Regulatory Storm Yet - See more at: http://www.wib.org/publications__resources/cfo__finance_digest/nov13/greenawalt.html#sthash.Z4zpv7fx.dpuf

The cost burden for WIB member banks to handle just Q3’s additional regulatory changes was over $46K per institution, according to the Banking Compliance Index (BCI). The good news is there are changes community bankers can make to ensure their institution survives. 

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Tuesday, October 29th, 2013

Overcoming compliance battle fatigue

It’s time for an honest, constructive conversation about the state of regulatory compliance in community banking. For starters, the burden isn’t going away – it’s only getting heavier. According to the Q3 2013 Banking Compliance Index, 179 regulatory changes have been issued and 508 new enforcement actions have been opened year to date. To understand these changes, compliance officers must read well over 10,000 pages of text. The cost to be compliant with just these new changes is more than $120,000 per institution.

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Friday, October 11th, 2013

Survey Roundup: Regulation Overload, Audit Change Differences

A look at some recent surveys and reports dealing with risk and compliance issues.

"The Banking Compliance Index data for the third quarter compiled by Continuity Control found no sign of regulatory relief for the remainder of the year, and a 31% increase in enforcement actions since the second quarter. The quarterly cost burden for an average institution to handle the quarter’s regulatory changes increased more than 65% to more than $43,000."

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Wednesday, October 9th, 2013

Enforcement Actions Rose 31% in Third Quarter, Study Says

Banks had to devote more money to compliance in the third quarter after regulators increased the rate of new enforcement actions.

"Community banks are facing increased regulatory demands, while at the same time, regulators are demonstrating a new focus on beefing up enforcement, creating one of toughest regulatory environments we've seen in 25 years," said Pam Perdue, Continuity Control's chief compliance strategist.

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Wednesday, October 2nd, 2013

By the Numbers: Regulation and Compliance

Infographic of regulatory burden for America's community banks.

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Tuesday, October 1st, 2013

How Do You Measure the Enormity of Someone’s Burden?

Everyone is aware of the tremendous pressure community banks are under as a result of the Dodd-Frank Act, but until recently, it seems no one had a scale or process in which to actually measure the burden. After all, how do you quantify a burden — especially when there is more yet-to-be-official burden to come?

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Wednesday, September 25th, 2013

Automating Compliance Offers Gain Without Pain

"“There is a huge amount of noise in the industry and the situation has been wildly overblown,” said Andy Greenawalt, CEO and co-founder of Continuity Control, a New Haven, Conn.-based compliance software provider. “A lot of credit unions believe they won’t be ready, but in reality they already are and just have to work through the details.”

Managing compliance is one of the biggest challenges facing financial institutions, according to Sam Whitehurst, president and CEO of $150 million Summit Credit Union in Greensboro, N.C., and a Continuity Control client. The software provider’s automated approach makes addressing the challenges on an almost daily basis relatively easy, he said."

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Wednesday, September 18th, 2013

How Banks Can Prepare for QM Rules Despite Tech Delays

Community banks should do some serious soul searching about their mortgage operations as they approach the CFPB's January implementation deadline.

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Tuesday, September 10th, 2013

How Bank of the Sierra Stays One Step Ahead of Compliance

Compliance has become overwhelmingly pervasive, impacting virtually every aspect of the business – from the teller line to the marketing strategy. Most banks struggle to easily understand which regulations impact their operations, identify which actions need to be taken by whom, and assess their overall compliance risk across the business.

Such was the case for Bank of the Sierra, a $1.4 billion dollar, 26-branch institution based out of Porterville, California. As the business has grown, so have the compliance risks. Like most of its peers in the industry, the bank has faced greater scrutiny from examiners over the last several years. In 2011, the institution took action.

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Sunday, September 1st, 2013

3 Radical Compliance Management Changes You Can’t Afford to Ignore

If there’s one message financial institution executives can take away from the current regulatory environment, it’s that the storm is nowhere near over. More than 55 regulatory changes were issued in the second quarter of this year spanning over 2,300 pages and yielding 154 enforcement actions.

For WIB member banks, the cost impact of Q2’s changes will cost an alarming $37.3 million, or an estimated $46,252 per institution. With compliance costs growing at a rate of 15 to 18 percent each year, it goes without saying that banks are feeling the brunt of an aggressive regulatory burden.


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Monday, July 29th, 2013

Strategy, Scale & Automation Only Way To Succeed

If every regulatory change requires human energy, that becomes a problem. Credit Unions should not address compliance on a 1:1 ratio. Using a shared compliance officer from their CU league, might change that ratio to 5:1. Using technology, might take it to 20:1.

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Wednesday, July 24th, 2013

Risk Management Must Be Priority For All Banks, Not Just The Biggest

Despite the financial and operational challenges of regulatory compliance, investments in modern risk management capabilities must be viewed as an opportunity — not a burden — for all banks, regardless of size.

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Thursday, July 11th, 2013

Survey Roundup: Risk-Based Security, Banking Burdens

The Banking Compliance Index (BCI), put out by Continuity Control, found the average financial institution must devote 2.3 full-time employee equivalents to manage their regulatory burden; that the quarterly cost for average financial institutions has increased more than 7%, to nearly $40,000 per quarter; and the time it takes to comply with all the rules and regulations has increased more than 50% in the past year.

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Wednesday, July 10th, 2013

Bank regulatory burdens have jumped 117%, index reports

Bankers in St. Louis and elsewhere have been complaining about the increasing burden of government regulations, and now someone has put a number on it.

Regulatory burdens on banks have increased a whopping 117 percent in the last year,  according to the second quarter Banking Compliance Index. That’s a lot for community banks.

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Wednesday, July 10th, 2013

Index says reg burden up 117 percent in last year

The compliance burden has more than doubled in the last year, according to a New Haven, Connecticut company that tracks regulatory compliance for community banks. The Banking Compliance Index compiled by Continuity Control shows a 117 percent increase in reg burden during the past 12 months. The company said the average bank has needed to add 2.3 full-time equivalent employees to meet the additional compliance responsibility.

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Saturday, June 1st, 2013

The Regulatory Burden Seriously Threatens Banks’ Survival

Some challenges can seem too overwhelming to even think about, much less actually solve. For many banks, regulatory compliance is this kind of problem – far too big and complicated to contain and subdue.Yet many compliance officers are doing just that. Instead of ignoring the monster, they’re grabbing regulatory compliance by the horns and wrestling it to the ground. Strategically. Efficiently. Successfully.

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Tuesday, May 21st, 2013

Reg Worries Divert Bank Execs from Growth, M&A Efforts

Organic growth, dealmaking and innovation are taking a backseat to compliance. The regulatory burden topped the concerns of bank executives in a recent bank survey.

"Bankers are walking on eggshells and the term most frequently used is fear," says Andy Greenawalt, the chief executive of Continuity Control. "There is a psychological paralysis that has crept into the mix."

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Friday, May 17th, 2013

Case Study: Bank of the Sierra Automates Compliance Tasks

With the ever-increasing regulatory burden, community banks struggle to keep up with Washington. Some have deployed software to streamline compliance – Bank of the Sierra, a $1.5 billion-asset bank based in Porterville, Calif., is one of them.

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Monday, May 13th, 2013

Cost Of Compliance With CFPB Rules Issued Q1 Alone: $27K Per CU

It is not your imagination; credit unions ARE spending more and more time dealing with new regulations. According to financial technology provider Continuity Control, there were 120 new enforcement actions in the first quarter alone. During a recent Regulatory Compliance Briefing for Financial Institutions webinar, Pam Perdue, chief compliance strategist, said if an average FI dealt only with the new regulations released in Q1, it would need 919 hours to address 5,001 pages. The cost, calculated at $30 per hour, equals $27,570.

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Wednesday, May 1st, 2013

It's Time to Change the Way We Manage Compliance Costs

How can we stop the bleeding? It’s a question banks have been asking themselves for years as the cost of regulatory compliance erodes margins, eats away at valuable resources and threatens the overall health of the community banking industry.

If community banks expect to conquer the massive complexities of today’s regulatory environment, while also tackling other market pressures facing their business, they must re-think the way they manage compliance. This includes developing a program that is built upon five key success factors: standardization, automation, change management, process visibility and cost control.

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Wednesday, April 17th, 2013

Regulatory Costs Keep Rising, Distracting Community Banks.

Regulatory change is taking increasingly bigger bites out of community banks' bottom lines. Banks are spending more time and money to follow new regulations. That is problematic, especially when it distracts bankers from other duties, industry observers say.

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Tuesday, April 16th, 2013

Price of Increased Regulatory Burden: Less Time for Customers

The Banking Compliance Index (BCI) found that smaller banks will spend $250 million and 8.3 million hours complying with regulations implemented in Q1 2013. The BCI shifts the dialogue from anecdotes to quantifiable data that "sends a more powerful message," says Pam Perdue, Continuity Control's chief compliance strategist. "We think it will be welcomed by all of the constituencies. Most importantly, legislatures and regulators will be aware of the impact."

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Friday, April 12th, 2013

Index Shows Heavy Regulatory Burden on Community Banks

With more than 800 regulatory changes enacted since 2008, community banks have had to devote more time, money and manpower to stay in compliance. The Banking Compliance Index introduced Wednesday by compliance platform provider Continuity Control uses public and proprietary data to track a bank’s regulatory compliance workload.

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Wednesday, March 13th, 2013

Continuity Control and cbanc Network Partner

This week, compliance management platform Continuity Control and cbanc Network, a knowledge-collaboration community, announced a partnership.This partnership will make Continuity Control's RegAdvisor, a quarterly briefing, available through cbanc's WebEd program.

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Thursday, March 7th, 2013

Systematically Reducing Compliance Complexity

Managing compliance has become an overwhelming task because there is no standardized way to manage policies and procedures, so with every regulatory change the process starts all over again. When banks implement a standardized process for getting the work done, they have a sound system to address regulatory change.

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Wednesday, March 6th, 2013

Continuity Control Rolls Out Automated Compliance Software

Continuity Control, a New Haven, Conn.-based compliance company, has announced the availability of an automated compliance management system aimed at small and mid-sized credit unions and designed to offer continually updated information about evolving regulations from the NCUA.

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Monday, February 25th, 2013

Greensboro Postal CU Adds Continuity Control’s New Compliance Platform

GREENSBORO, N.C. – Greensboro Postal CU has implemented Continuity Control’s regulatory compliance management system to help it keep up with new NCUA rules and regulations. Tied directly to NCUA’s Automated Integrated Regulatory Examination Software, Continuity Control said its new platform automates the notification of regulatory changes, interprets the meaning of the compliance requirements and translates requirements into systematic deliverables for small- to mid-size credit unions.

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Wednesday, February 13th, 2013

Regulatory Compliance and Community Banking Growth – Not an Oxymoron

Community banks are finding it hard to prosper in this regulatory environment. In a recent survey, a staggering 47 percent of community banking executives cited regulations as their greatest impediment to growth for the coming year. But this doesn’t have to be the case. There are 5 dynamics causing over-investment in compliance. Once solved, growth is possible even in the face of changes brought on by the regulatory environment.

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Tuesday, February 12th, 2013

Illinois Banking Group Adds Continuity Control to Preferred Provider List

Continuity Control announced Friday that it has been endorsed as a preferred provider by the Community BancService Corporation (CBSC), a subsidiary of the Community Bankers Association of Illinois that recommends products and services to banks. Continuity Control sells compliance software to community financial institutions.

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Saturday, December 22nd, 2012

The Intersection of Compliance and Innovation

Challenges drive innovations that become part of our day-to-day lives.  From light bulbs to the Internet to GPS, innovation is everywhere.  And the next stop? Innovations that reduce the compliance burden for banks. (Full article found on pages 32-33) 

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Thursday, December 20th, 2012

Five Dynamics To Renovate Your Compliance Program

Bankers are no strangers to technology, more and more banks are upgrading their service and product offerings. So it’s logical to wonder, with so many technological advancements taking place within community banking, why has the process of compliance remained in the dark? After years of analysis we’ve deduced that there are 5 major factors causing an over-investment in compliance: the rate of change, managing tasks manually, lack of standardization, reliance on 3rd parties and absence of a compliance budget.  This article outlines 5 key dynamics that can renovate your compliance program and get you back to the business of banking. (Full article found on page 12) 

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Friday, December 7th, 2012

Solving the Problem of Compliance Over-Investment

We’ve all seen the uptick of transaction notices in newspapers. No, I’m not referring to the housing market, but rather the alarming rate of community banks closing their doors. Given the challenges in the banking industry, community banks looking at their options are increasingly realizing that the burden of compliance management has become more than they can handle.

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Wednesday, November 21st, 2012

Part III: Remediation - Compliance Lessons from the Construction Industry

Directors must ensure corrective actions are taken when weaknesses occur. Similar to preserving a house, an institution’s success depends on whether corrective actions are taken immediately.

There are three main aspects to successfully implementing corrective action:
1. Specifying and assigning corrective steps,
2. Confirming the correction occurred, and
3. Following-up at appropriate intervals to ensure the correction’s effectiveness.

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Wednesday, November 14th, 2012

How Will White House Shift Impact Dodd-Frank?

Andy Greenawalt, CEO of the New Haven, Conn.-based bank compliance software firm Continuity Control, said regulation isn’t partisan, it’s cyclical. The low point in the cycle is 100 new regulations per year and the high point is 300. Greenawalt said he doesn’t see the pace of new regulations slowing. To maintain viability, credit unions must find ways to make change cost less.

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Friday, November 9th, 2012

Liz Duke’s plan may save U.S. banks

Duke, a former community banker herself, knows there’s a difference between a too-big-to-fail institution and your local storefront lender. She said applying additional regulations and strict capital requirements under the international Basel III guidelines would “seriously impair” small lenders.

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Monday, October 22nd, 2012

Part II: The Inspection Process - Compliance Lessons from the Construction Industry

Just like a home inspection, a banking inspection ensures the safety and soundness of the structure. An overlooked mistake can spell a failed inspection, or worse, a structural collapse—and perhaps liability. Even after a passed inspection, periodic maintenance is required.Prompt detection, and swift and thorough remediation of the problem areas, can halt concerns before they worsen, thereby protecting your institution.

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Friday, September 14th, 2012

Built to Last: Compliance Lessons from the Construction Industry

What do the most effective compliance programs have in common and how are they similar to construction projects? This article discusses the critical elements to building a successful compliance program - beginning with the blueprint.

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Tuesday, September 4th, 2012

The PAIN Score: Letting Data Drive Your Compliance Decisions

With 762 regulatory updates in the past 5 years, an average of 152 annually, It’s time to think about compliance in a more structured fashion. To allocate resources more methodically and get more done with less effort. To deal with this increase, the team of Continuity Control has created the PAIN Score, a data-driven method to compliance decision-making that scores each regulatory update along four metrics:  Processes, Ambiguity, Interdependence and Noncompliance Consequences.

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Wednesday, August 29th, 2012

Control Freak

While most banks have sufficient regulatory and compliance controls in place, many have found it challenging communicating and documenting those controls to the satisfaction of their examiners. Andy Greenawalt answers questions on how community banks can more effectively report their risk management controls to examiners.

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Monday, August 20th, 2012

Looking To Technology To Lighten Dodd-Frank Compliance Load

"We still haven't seen the brunt of Dodd-Frank or increased examinations yet," said Greenawalt. "Every year credit unions are investing in more compliance but not modernizing the process. They are investing in horse drawn carriages while cars are available."

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Tuesday, August 14th, 2012

TECHNOLOGY SEEKS TO TRUMP DODD/FRANK

The regulatory burden on banks and credit unions has been exacerbated by the Dodd/Frank Act which threatens the viability of thousands of financial institutions.  This trend has many financial institutions seeking technologically advanced methods to handle the burden.  Andy Greenawalt, CEO of Continuity Control, had this to say,"With a new plan of attack and the right technology, executives willing to make hard choices about change can improve their banks' efficiency ratios...A necessary element of that improvement will be the ability to operate in this complex regulatory environment with minimal overhead." 

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Tuesday, August 7th, 2012

Small Banks Struggling Under the Weight of New Regulations

Community financial institutions are bearing the greater burden of the Dodd-Frank Act. The overall costs of compliance do not change in accordance to the size of the institution, which is problematic for community banks and credit unions since they are not able to spread the cost as widely.  
“These banks were forced to deal with 157 rule alerts issued in just the last year, 58 of which came down in the last six months. All together, 762 rule alerts were issued by the individual regulatory agencies over the last five years with hundreds of subsequent updates” says Andy Greenawalt, CEO of Continuity Control.  The rise in cost due to the increase in regulations is pushing community financial institutions to a compliance tipping point.  Analysis of the soundness of community banks, conducted by Continuity Control, found  that “half of the nation’s 7,000 community banks are barely surviving today.”

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Tuesday, August 7th, 2012

Two Years later: The ‘Gift’ of the Dodd-Frank Act

In July 2010, the federal Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (Dodd-Frank Act) was signed into law.  And as a result many community banks and credit unions are struggling to keep up with the pace of change. Andy Greenawalt, CEO of Continuity Control, saw this as an opportunity to develop an innovative compliance platform to help community financial institutions manage the growing burden of compliance.  

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Friday, July 20th, 2012

As Dodd-Frank Turns Two, Tech Solutions Lacking

On the second anniversary of the Dodd-Frank bill, the technology to handle its stipulations is far from complete. That stands to reason, given how few of the rules and regulations implementing the sweeping reform bill have been written.

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Tuesday, July 10th, 2012

Continuity Control takes in $2.25M, triples office space

Bank compliance software maker  ... Continuity Control, has taken the last round of funding that CEO and founder Andrew Greenawalt hopes it will need: a $2.25 million investment from Connecticut Innovations and several angel investors.

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Thursday, July 5th, 2012

Who Wants to Start a Bank? No One

New regulations created to monitor the big banks “are squeezing the smallest competitors and turning our banking system into a commodity business.”  These big banks are able to manage the regulatory burden by using sophisticated compliance platforms, previously unavailable to community financial institutions,  leaving community bankers with  “almost no incentive ... to start a small bank to serve their community” anymore.

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Thursday, June 7th, 2012

Quantifying the Hidden Costs of Compliance

The time requirements of new regulations are widely misconstrued by regulators and are exhausting the resources of community financial institutions that are valiantly trying to meet this burden.  In today’s regulatory reality, “Word documents and Excel spreadsheets are inadequate tools” however, “by flipping your compliance strategy and tackling the burden in a new way, the costs of compliance can be aligned with the vision of the regulators.”

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Wednesday, April 4th, 2012

Regulatory Compliance and Community Banking Growth - Not an Oxymoron

The regulatory environment has been hard on the banking industry.  A recent survey found that 47% of community bank executives cited regulations as their greatest impediment to growth.  Community banks are facing a 20% efficiency disadvantage to the mega banks, but this doesn’t have to be the trend.  This article outlines  5 dynamics that, when controlled, can reduce the over-investment in compliance. (Full article found on pages 9 - 10). 

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Sunday, April 1st, 2012

Engineered Compliance

"Having a systematic way to test for compliance is critical," says Julie Conroy McNelley, a research director for Aite. She estimates there are 253 incremental regulations that will be added as a result of Dodd-Frank. "A lot of big banks have a platform in place to help with this. But with small banks, you have one or two people to handle compliance, and oftentimes the compliance and audits come with a huge paper trail." We'd just like to clarify that our solution is far more than a downloadable compliance management module. Continuity Control is the only complete compliance platform for community financial institutions.

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Thursday, March 1st, 2012

Do You Want to Manage Risk – or Reduce It?

I was talking with a group of bankers the other day who had just heard the rallying cry that “risk management” is a hot topic. When I clarified that the concept of risk-focused supervision had been around since 1995, they were shocked. This seasoned group of top-level executives was even more astounded when I asserted that the traditional models of managing risk would fail in 2012 and beyond. 

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Wednesday, February 1st, 2012

More Regulation Doesn't Require More Staff

There is a widely held misconception that post-Dodd-Frank compliance will require banks to spend a majority of their resources to uphold compliance. This commonly held belief is preventing many bankers from making the best long-term decisions for their institutions. Statistics compiled by the regulatory operations center at Continuity Control indicate that the average community bank is projected to spend $200,000 in 2012 on compliance costs alone. However, in actuality there is an inverse relationship between a bank’s compliance expenditures and its compliance performance.

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Monday, January 9th, 2012

Analyst: Get Ready For Increased Scrutiny Of Marketing & Advertising

"Pam Perdue, chief compliance strategist at Continuity Control, said credit unions can expect to see "a lot more scrutiny around their behaviors with their members, and by that I mean the ways in which they advertise their product and service offerings," as well as the disclosures associated with those offerings."

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Thursday, December 1st, 2011

The Compliance Myth

Why more regulations do not automatically require more staff

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Friday, November 4th, 2011

Tech Companies to Watch - Continuity Control

Continuity Control enables community financial institutions to meet the diverse, often conflicting, objectives around compliance in our post Dodd-Frank world.

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Wednesday, September 21st, 2011

Continuity Control Acquires Two Compliance Providers

"Compliance management solutions provider Continuity Control has acquired two other firms and added their senior managers to its team."

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Tuesday, September 13th, 2011

Continuity Control in New Haven acquires two companies

The company acquired Compliance Services Group of Des Moines, Iowa, and Kirschler Peterson & Associates of Atlanta to support to the growing number of financial institutions that are clients of Continuity Control.

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Wednesday, June 8th, 2011

Continuity Control and My Compliance Info Join Forces

My Compliance Info founder Pam Perdue says that after seeing the Continuity platform and methodology, she simply could not go back to using antiquated compliance methods or inferior, piecemeal solutions. “We recognized not only the technological might of Continuity’s engine, but also its unbounded potential for revolutionizing the ways in which we think about and manage compliance,” she observed. “It’s our privilege to join Andy’s team and help them further leverage their proven track record of technology success. Continuity gets compliance under control.”

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Tuesday, April 12th, 2011

ATTUS Technologies Announces Partnership with Award-Winning Bankers Assistant by Continuity Control

“The Bankers Assistant program provides significant and sustained cost savings over any financial institution’s manual processes, but it also facilitates better controls and a more thorough audit trail for improved compliance adherence and documentation,” said Lori Moore, CRCM, director of compliance for ATTUS. “One of the most effective tools is the Monitor that allows financial institutions to see all of their compliance activities and their status in real-time.”

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Friday, December 3rd, 2010

WikiLeaks: Is Cloud the Solution?

"As the WikiLeaks controversy brews, corporate ethics, privacy and the rights of whistleblowers are hot topics of debate. But what about security?"

Andy Greenawalt discusses the core challenge with traditional data management and the solution that banks and credit unions are finding in cloud services such as Google Docs. "The need for human access proves the PC era is broken. The sooner we move on, the more secure we will all be," Greenawalt says. "By putting traffic in the cloud, you make the security and access equation fundamentally more solvable. It helps to keep you from missing a gap."

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Wednesday, December 1st, 2010

10 Tech Companies to Watch

"Andy Greenwalt's Continuity Control wants to keep community banks in business by making compliance more affordable."

With regulatory compliance Apps that are as easy to purchase and install as an iPhone App, Control gives community banks with only one or two people in the Compliance department the benefits of a tier one bank's compliance "apparatus" at a fraction of the cost.

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Wednesday, December 1st, 2010

Up in the Air

Community Banks are slowly embracing cloud computing, which can help cut costs and increase efficiency.

"It's something that I don't have to touch, and it's all taken care of by someone else. That's a very big plus." - Rachael Peterson, CFO at Bridgewater Bank, a $350M community bank.

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Monday, November 29th, 2010

A Stitch In Time

Northern Federal Credit Union is using Continuity Control's online software application and online resources to boost the credit union's compliance training and vendor management.  Control's applications have kept the credit union from having to hire an additional employee and made the compliance officer much more efficient. "It saves me at least three to four hours a week," said Compliance Specialist Jennifer Davis, who added the tool helps her more effectively manage, monitor, and coordinate compliance activity throughout the entire credit union.

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Monday, November 22nd, 2010

Compliance Process No Longer 'Overwhelming'

"We did everything manually," based on a Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) policy template purchased online, Gilman explained. "I was following an FFIEC manual and hoping I got it right. I spent a week every year preparing and reviewing the policy and then following up with staff to make sure each task was accomplished. Compliance was almost like a line of business for us."

BSA compliance is now largely automated at York County FCU and takes less than three days - that's a cost reduction of nearly 80% for just one area of regulatory compliance. Gilman plans to activate the entire suite of nearly 40 Control applications as part of the Compliance Assistant Program.

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Wednesday, November 10th, 2010

Houston CU Turns to SaaS Tool After Robbery

"First Service CU responded to the June 2009 holdup by deploying an automated compliance package designed to guarantee that controls such as alarm testing and inventory of bait money are in place at each of the credit union’s 10 locations around Harris County.

"Together with our senior vice president of IT, I worked on a credit union-wide assessment of our security and compliance policies, which showed a definite need for FSCU to automate procedures, organize our control policies and create consistency among all branches," said Sid Zahn, vice president of compliance and internal audit at the Texas credit union."

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Monday, November 1st, 2010

Hot Technologies

From compliance management to fraud detection software, community banks are busy considering systems.

One company involved in a compliance management software niche informally called "nagware" is Continuity Control in New Haven, Conn. The company offers 40 specialized applications to help executives and compliance officers...

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Wednesday, October 20th, 2010

Mobile-Specific Guidance and Regulations Surely Lie Ahead

Rules and regulations specific to the fast-growing mobile banking channel will be a fact of life. It’s just a matter of time.  That’s according to people who make their living helping credit unions and other financial institutions accommodate new technologies and the compliance challenges that come along with them, as well as shape the rules themselves.

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Monday, August 16th, 2010

The One ‘Tax’ CUs Aren’t Exempt From: Compliance Cost

Credit unions may have a tax exemption, but they’re anything but exempt from the “compliance tax,” according to one company.

Indeed, in the inverse of typical tax rates, the smaller the CU the larger the compliance tax burden in most cases, reports Continuity Control, a provider of an on-demand, web–based software platform for compliance.

“We’re seeing this dramatic increase in back-end costs to support every dollar of assets,” said CEO Andy Greenawalt, referring to what the company calls the “compliance tax.”

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Sunday, August 1st, 2010

The New Approach to Regulation: Moving Beyond Merge or Die

The Frank-Dodd financial reform bill is the latest development in the growing regulatory oversight that is burdening the entire financial services industry and crippling community financial institutions in particular. Some financial industry experts contend that the only options for community financial institutions are to grow, merge or die. The reasoning behind this logic is that there are just two real alternatives for credit unions. The first is to grow, via organic or strategic means, with market share penetration or a merger. The latter, death, needs no real explanation.  The assumption that the cost of compliance is not elastic and cannot be scaled down for smaller institutions holds the “merge or die” argument together.

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Monday, July 26th, 2010

Vendor Pitches Compliance, ‘Nagware’ as cost, headache cutter

On the heels of the epic banking regulatory reform bill that President Obama signed into law on July 21, we were very pleased to share our perspective, and the method by which we aim to help community financial institutions survive and thrive by cutting their Compliance Tax,  on the cover of American Banker July 26, 2010.  “What we hear from people all the time is, ‘Just tell me what I need to do,’ ” said Andy Greenawalt, the founder and chief executive of Continuity Control.

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Monday, March 8th, 2010

How CUs Can Collaborate To Gear Up For 'Compliance Tax' Burden

A recent report makes the assertion that "by 2013, the cost of regulatory compliance and risk management will have priced Tier 3 and Tier 4 financial institutions out of the market." This Compliance Tax can be addressed, and I believe the solution is found in technology...

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Monday, March 1st, 2010

Safeguarding your Social Media Campaign

This article, which appears on Page 32, explores the adoption of social media within the banking industry and how technology can be used lower the burden of social media compliance. One of the top reasons cited by community banks for avoiding social media has been the issue of compliance and the concerns it brings.

While compliance regulations have not kept pace with the adoption of social media, banks still must be proactive in establishing a policy that clearly provides guidance and controls for social networking. This article provides helpful tips to get started and how the use of technology can be used to manage the new risks that come with social networking.

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Wednesday, September 30th, 2009

“Vendors Allied on Compliance Tool”

Continuity Engine is enlisting other companies to help it streamline and automate the tasks it handles for community banks that must satisfy regulators.  Through its ActionPack Alliance, the company is working with its first group of outside providers, writing modules for Continuity Engine’s compliance automation system, Control.  Control now offers about 60 ActionPacks and there are more than 400 financial institutions using the platform.

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Monday, September 21st, 2009

“What Not to Say on Twitter”

Credit unions are facing the impact of employees using social networking Web sites, such as Twitter, for both professional and personal use.  As a result, Arizona State CU built social media guidelines in to its employee handbook.  The guidelines were based on the free social media policy that the credit union downloaded from Continuity Engine.  The policy was created from a collaborative effort and it’s subject to improvements suggested by the financial institutions that created it through crowdsourcing.

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Friday, August 28th, 2009

Small, Midsize Banks Go Outside to Secure Data

"Facing increasing pressure to improve their data security, a growing number of small and midsized banks are looking for outside help.  Union Savings Bank has partnered with Continuity Engine to create regulatory compliance modules, known as ActionPacks, that manage everything from human resource policies to IT change controls."

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