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Fiserv Rolls Out Mobile Deposit Capture

Reselling Mitek's check image capture system to let its bank customers deposit checks through their cell phones.

A year after its agreement to OEM Mitek's mobile check image capture technology, Fiserv is making the product available to all its bank customers.

This move will enable Fiserv's bank customers to join the ranks of financial institutions that let consumers deposit checks via mobile phone, which include Bank of America, J. P. Morgan Chase, USAA, and Conestoga Bank. Having the customer submit photos of the front and back of his check rather than the paper document saves banks time and money and provides convenience to the customer.

Last week, Mitek announced that it has received a patent for its mobile deposit capture software. The patent covers the process of capturing a color image of a financial document using a mobile device and then transmitting the image to a server where the image can be manipulated such that information in it can be interpreted and retrieved by the financial institution’s remote deposit capture capabilities. The patent also covers the steps of detecting the financial document in the image, converting the image and correcting the orientation and size of the image. This patent may give Mitek a lock on this market, forcing other core banking providers to make agreements with it. It also prevents its partner Fiserv from making the mobile deposit capture software its own.

The Fiserv/Mitek offering, Mobile Source Capture, is being initially targeted at clients seeking a customized or stand-alone solution, which are typically large financial institutions. The solution will be integrated with Fiserv account processing solutions later this year and in 2011.

Fiserv has been conducting customer pilot trials for mobile deposit capture since 2009. Based on feedback from those pilots, Fiserv expanded the product to include multi-item deposit capability, single sign-on authentication, and a virtual endorsement feature (the ability to place a virtual stamp on the back of the image). Fiserv also built in risk mitigation capabilities that allow for item validation to occur during capture. Fiserv offers enterprise-wide duplicate detection and a Deposit Review feature that allow quicker feedback to the phone user while ensuring the deposit is valid before it enters the deposit cycle.

"The cool factor of depositing a check by taking a picture of it with your cell phone just can't be denied," said Gary Brand, director of Source Capture Solutions at Fiserv. "These days, consumers want to be able to bank whenever and wherever they want — especially Gen Y consumers, who are tech-savvy. Financial institutions that offer mobile deposit capture will provide their customers with a new and convenient way to make deposits any time, day or night, without ever stepping foot in a branch. Technology that can allow customers to bank the way they want increases customer satisfaction and can attract new customers."

According to research firm Mercatus, 59 percent of today's mobile banking customers are likely to adopt mobile remote deposit capture if the technology is offered by their banks. Another recent study conducted by Javelin Strategy and Research found that younger and higher-income consumers most desired the technology. According to the April 2010 study, more than half of alert recipients, half of mobile bankers, 45 percent of iPhone users and 38 percent of smart phone owners desire the technology.

"We believe there is a tremendous opportunity for mobile deposit capture," said Mark Schwanhausser, senior analyst, multi-channel financial services, Javelin Strategy and Research. "Our research indicates that consumers are demanding more mobile capabilities from their banks. We believe that banks and credit unions should consider mobile deposit capture when planning their mobile channel strategy."

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