Business Continuity

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As a CUSO and cuasterisk.com network partner delivering products and services to 200+ credit unions nation-wide representing more than 2,000 concurrent system users supporting over 1.7 million members, CU*Answers is committed to being there when our customers and owners need us most. Whether it’s the software tools we build and provide that enable credit unions to successfully manage and market their operations or the online banking platforms our members use to reach their financial goals, the expectations are the same. The network and the information it contains must be secure and it must be available.

To accomplish this, CU*Answers adheres to strict continuity and recovery principles aligned with industry standards and guidelines, implemented and managed through a robust Business Continuity Management Program. Certified and experienced recovery teams actively monitor daily operations, anticipating incidents and threats with the potential for creating disruptions.

An effective Business Continuity Management program answers the following:

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At the heart of the program is a comprehensive written Business Continuity Plan (BCP) developed to maintain or resume business in the event of a disruption. The BCP includes both the technology recovery capability (also known as Disaster Recovery) as well as the recovery of the business units themselves.

Key components of the CU*Answers Business Continuity Plan include:

For questions about the CU*Answers Business Continuity Plan or to request a copy, please contact us.

 

Business Continuity Planning Process

Keeping the continuity and recovery plans accurate, complete and relevant in a constantly changing and ever increasing complex business and IT environment requires a repeatable process; one that includes the following steps:

  1. Needs Assessment and Program Initiation

    1. Identifies gaps between existing plans and policies and aligns strategies implemented with defined business goals and objectives.
  2. Business Impact Analysis and Risk Assessment

    1. Identifies critical business functions and the threats that warrant the risk of disruption.
  3. Continuity and Recovery Strategy Development

    1. Identifies cost effective controls and procedures to mitigate the likelihood of disruption and the impact to the organization.
  4. Recovery Plan Development and Implementation

    1. Documents the strategies and recovery procedures put in place to continue operations through or recover from disruptions.
  5. Plan Awareness and Training

    1. Educates staff of their roles and responsibilities prior to and during a recovery effort.
  6. Plan Exercise, Audit and Maintenance

    1. Validates accuracy and completeness of the plan and sharpens recovery skills through regular testing.

With defined goals and objective created at the onset, each step identifies key information that helps shape the program resulting in a strategy and plan that is both effective (provides for a timely recovery of critical business functions) and efficient (minimizes losses and allocates limited budget resources for technologies and controls that best address operational risk).

Contact a CU*Answers Certified Continuity Consultant today to learn how you can improve your credit union’s ability to adapt and respond to the next unexpected business disruption.

Creating a “Culture of Continuity”

Having a robust business continuity program requires support and participation at all levels of the organization. The most resilient operations are those that continually educate and train staff for emergency scenarios, effectively creating a “Culture of Continuity”.  Culture is the personality, philosophy, attitude, values, and behaviors that define an organization’s style, policies, and working environment.

Culture influences:

  • How decisions are made and carried out,
  • Resistance to change and innovation,
  • Degree of accountability and ownership,
  • Organizational strategy, and
  • How “things get done”.

At CU*Answers, “Culture of Continuity” is defined as:

“The organizational state of being in which all personnel inherently work to minimize the likelihood of downtime and improve responsiveness and recoverability as we perform day-to-day activities.”

The highlight of the CU*Answers awareness and training program is the annual Continuity Awareness Day with participation from all departments across three facilities.

Read a CU Insight article about our culture of continuity.

For the Credit Union

Developing, implementing, and testing continuity and disaster recovery plans can seem an overwhelming task requiring time, resources and skills not always available in every organization.  The impact of an outdated plan that is incomplete and no longer relevant puts your organization at risk with the potential for compliance issues, financial loss, member dissatisfaction and damaged reputation.

For more information, see the “Resilient Credit Union”.

The same talent, skills and expertise used to safeguard core-processing for the CU*Answers network is available to you. Our experience in the credit union industry can help guide your business continuity program so that it properly measures up to regulatory requirements (NCUA, FFIEC, etc.), standards and guidelines, peers in the industry, and professional best practices. To accomplish this, we offer the right mix of professional and managed services shown below to complement your exiting program or to help you build one. Contact a CU*Answers Continuity Consultant today to discover in-network solutions that best meet your business objectives.

   

See what Business Continuity has to offer!

Business Continuity products are now available to order in the store.

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Next Steps

CU*Answers offers professional and managed services to help you meet and exceed your recovery objectives. Contact a CU*Answers Continuity Consultant today to discover in-network solutions that best meet your business objectives.

Updated
June 1, 2018

Let CU*Answers Help Design Your Business Continuity Plan!

Let CU*Answers Help Design Your Business Continuity Plan!

The CU*Answers Business Continuity Team continues to invest in high availability and recovery strategies to ensure that the products and services you count on us for are available when you need them. Implementing strategies and responding when uncertainty happens requires a well-designed and thoroughly tested plan, helping you to continue serving your members, even when… Read more »

Nov 15, 2018

[The Pulse] HA Rollover Results Now Available

[The Pulse] HA Rollover Results Now Available

HA Rollover Results Now Available Rollover: September 23 – 26 Now available for your review is a summary of the recent HA (high-availability) rollover event, performed May 20 – 23.  In the report, you will find details about the exercise and hardware upgrades, including challenges observed, lessons learned, and recommendations for improving the rollover process…. Read more »

Oct 26, 2018

Workplace Violence/Active Shooter

In today’s workplace, an act of violence/active shooter event is 18 times more likely than a fire according to the Department of Justice. What?!?! That is startling. What does that mean for me, for my organization? Well, it means that an active shooter situation is now a recognized hazard per OSHA and companies are realizing… Read more »

Sep 28, 2018

CU*BASE HA Rollback Updates for September 26

CU*BASE HA Rollback Updates for September 26

Remember that we will be rolling back late Wednesday evening, September 26.  Make sure someone is at your branches early the morning of Thursday, September 27 to check the connections before members start to arrive! Even if everything went smoothly for you earlier this week, when three different environments have to work together (yours, ours,… Read more »

Sep 26, 2018

CU*BASE HA Rollover Updates for September 23

CU*BASE HA Rollover Updates for September 23

We will be posting any/all issues related to the September 23rd HA Rollover event to the CU*BASE Alerts page, compiled into a single alert located here.  We will not be sending out any emails regarding individual issues for the HA Rollover.  If you encounter any issues between Sunday, September 23rd and Monday September 24th, please… Read more »

Sep 21, 2018

[The Pulse] Reminder: HA Rollover Scheduled for September 23-26

[The Pulse] Reminder: HA Rollover Scheduled for September 23-26

High Availability Rollover Scheduled Sunday, September 23 – Wednesday, September 26   During this rollover event, we will redirect CU*BASE core-processing from our primary production data center to systems at our high-availability (HA) data center. The rollover process will begin at 10:00 PM ET on Sunday, September 23. We will continue providing live production of… Read more »

Sep 18, 2018

[The Pulse] HA Rollover Scheduled for September 23-26

[The Pulse] HA Rollover Scheduled for September 23-26

High Availability Rollover Scheduled Sunday, September 23 – Wednesday, September 26   During this rollover event, we will redirect CU*BASE core-processing from our primary production data center to systems at our high-availability (HA) data center. The rollover process will begin at 10:00 PM ET on Sunday, September 23. We will continue providing live production of… Read more »

Sep 7, 2018

[The Pulse] Item Processing Disaster Recovery Test Report Now Available

[The Pulse] Item Processing Disaster Recovery Test Report Now Available

Item Processing Disaster Recovery Test: Report Now Available For those credit unions who currently use CU*Answers for Electronic Check Processing (ECP), this report is for you. During the week of August 13, 2018, teams at CU*Answers completed the annual test by restoring the CheckLogic environment and performing daily check processing operations from systems at our secondary… Read more »

Aug 22, 2018