Military realities in the age of technology & insecurity
WASHINGTON, DC (February 13, 2020) — Anthony Hernandez, President and CEO of DCUC, moderated a Technology & Veteran Insecurity panel at the Filene Research Event in Irvine, CA, on January 28, 2020. The panelist discussed economic insecurity, technology and privacy concerns, physical safety and identity theft in regard to our military and veteran population.
Our military often serve in remote locations or austere battlefields that make it difficult for them to access funds or financial services. This challenge increases their risk of compromising operational security, such as through the participation of person to person (P2P) payments via social media and other virtual platforms.
As the globe becomes more technologically advanced, it adds a layer of heightened threat for our service members due to the sensitive nature of the military’s job. Their mission and jobs by nature should not be able to be data mined by public companies as it opens up the threat of this information being used by people who would do our country harm. With technology being increasingly embedded into our lives (our phones, our watches, our refrigerators, apps to make our life easier), it becomes harder to keep the line between private and public.
An example would be a military member attempting to track their fitness through wearable technology and unintentionally mapping out where their base is and how it is laid out, which happened to a US base in Afghanistan in 2017. This vulnerability came about because of the rapid changes in wearable technology and the lack of forethought put into the possible consequences of it.
Other issues include the push for biometrics to secure information and the risk of them being a PTSD trigger, data security, deployment issues and how artificial intelligence can target our military and veterans. It is imperative that financial institutions identify the percentage of their membership or consumer base that is affected by these concerns and recognize if the institution is offering advanced technologies to meet the consumer’s needs.
The Technology & Veteran Insecurity panel was created to bring awareness to the credit union industry to prevent this from happening with our own technological advances and to show how credit unions are already thinking ahead and tackling these challenges.
These concerns are being addressed by CEOs throughout the Defense Credit Union industry, and they are relying on member feedback when considering technology decisions.
About Defense Credit Union Council
The Defense Credit Union Council is a trade association representing the interests of federally and state-chartered credit unions serving our military around the globe. By maintaining a close and constant liaison with the Pentagon, the Council supports its member credit unions and the Department of Defense (DOD) in coordinating policy, procedures, and legislation impacting morale and welfare, financial readiness, and the delivery of quality financial products and services to DOD personnel and their families. Organized in 1963, the Council’s membership is comprised of 180 credit unions with over 25 million members.