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Private cloud 'very important' for ANZ Banking Group: CIO

Hamish Barwick | Nov. 19, 2012
While CBA CIO Michael Harte has dismissed data sovereignty and security excuses used by businesses not to move to the cloud as "absolute garbage", over at ANZ, CIO Anne Weatherston has taken a different approach.

While CBA CIO Michael Harte has dismissed data sovereignty and security excuses used by businesses not to move to the cloud as "absolute garbage", over at ANZ, CIO Anne Weatherston has taken a different approach.

Speaking to CIO Australia during Gartner's annual Symposium/ITxpo, Weatherston said the bank implemented private cloud during 2012 for all of its EIX Solaris services and over the next two years it will introduce private cloud for its mainframe, Windows and Teradata environments.

"Private cloud is very important to us and we believe that we can provision services much more quickly to the business but we'll also be able to reduce the cost of services by 70 per cent," she said.

"That said, because of the regulatory environment ANZ is in, we don't see it going any further than private cloud. The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority [APRA] is still very much against public cloud and hybrid cloud use."

Weatherston's view on cloud computing has softened since 2011 when she stated that cloud computing was not mature enough for the financial services sector.

However, as she has to answer to 32 different banking regulators in the 32 countries within the Asia Pacific that ANZ Bank operates in, security is still paramount. Weatherston said these regulators have concerns about public cloud and the security of information held within public clouds.

"If you look at most of the big cyber crime hacks they've come through cloud," she said. "For example, the Sony [Playstation Network] attack [in 2011] came through an Amazon server."

"When it comes to customers, security is the number one priority for customers of banks. With financial transactions, a lot of customers aren't comfortable with any kind of cloud interaction," Weatherston said.

"We have to assume that customer data is precious and we are guardians of that data."

Mobile banking

Turning to mobile banking, Weatherston said that ANZ was actively working on re-configuring its GoMoney Internet and mobile application.

"The strategy there is we've selected Sybase 365 and this will replace our existing online and mobile services."

According to Weatherston, the look and feel of the Sybase powered mobile banking platform will be as close to GoMoney as possible but with 'cross-channel' functionality.

"A lot of the frustration our customer have with things like GoMoney is specific to how it operates on iPhone or Android phones. This service can be used from any device and it will be a consistent experience."

For example, if an ANZ Bank customer uses Internet or mobile banking on their iPad tablet or Android phone they will see exactly the same functions and be able to transact, view payments and account details.

She added that the bank anticipates releasing the reconfigured GoMoney service in Australia during the first half of 2013.

 

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