Just a third of financial institutions sending confidential documents to third parties via the Internet are using a secure electronic delivery system, according to a survey from Wolters Kluwer Financial Services.
A poll of 347 banks, credit unions and mortgage companies reveals that nearly 62% are using the Internet to transmit confidential documents to customers, partners and service providers.
Yet of these, only a third use a secure electronic delivery system. Approximately another third are using traditional e-mail, which does not encrypt data. The remainder use less secure document delivery methods such as password protected e-mail and Web sites, regular or overnight mail, or are not sure of the method they use.
Jason Marx, general manager, mortgage, Wolters Kluwer, says the growth of identity theft and other forms of electronic fraud makes it harder to send documents or information safely via traditional mail, e-mail and Web sites.
Even with password protection, he says, fraudsters can hack into systems to access customer information.
"A secure, electronic delivery system that encrypts sensitive data so only the sender and receiver can view can help better protect confidential data and documents," adds Marx.
The growing concern within the industry over document security prompted a move in November by Origo, the technology standards body for the UK life assurance industry, to partner with IFA portal Sesame, Norwich Union and Skandia to pilot an e-mail service for the exchange of confidential business documentation.