The Resilient Credit Union

Much like achieving good health is to our body (result of decisions we make and actions we take every day), resilience is to the organization.  It’s built up over time. Just as a strong immune system helps the body fight off germs and viruses, a strong continuity and recovery program helps the organization resist and respond to threats that could disrupt normal operations.

Resilience  \ri–’zil-yən(t)s\ noun “The operational and technological readiness that prepares an organization to make day-to-day operations efficient and cost-effective,  and to resist, absorb and recover from or successfully adapt to adversity or a change in conditions.”

An operational risk is any incident or event that results in a partial or full disruption to one or more processes producing a measurable impact (loss).  Examples include power outage, server malfunction, service disruption, software error, security incident, severe weather, flooding and fire, to name a few.

These incidents can occur in many forms including:

  • Interruption of IT services or loss of data
  • Disruption in the workplace
  • Reduction in the workforce
  • Disruption of a service from a third-party vendor

The impact from these incidents can range from minimal (affecting only one product or service or a single branch) to major (affecting multiple products or services at all branches) across multiple disciplines (Operational, Reputational, Financial, and Compliance).  Regardless of the impact, organizations must be ready to respond. For each type of event or incident, the response must be quick and it must be effective. The only way to achieve this level of readiness is to plan carefully and to practice regularly.

Strict security, disaster recovery and business continuity requirements are a reality facing credit unions and financial institutions today. A static plan is not enough. Developing and implementing a Business Continuity Management (BCM) program that results in a repeatable process focused on continual improvement is the new standard. Resilience starts when business continuity stops being a series of separate activities, is embraced as a business process, and becomes part of day-to-day decision-making and operations.

The success or failure of the BCM program rests on the shoulders of the board and senior management.  As stated in the FFIEC IT Examination Handbook, they are accountable for the oversight and governance of the Business Continuity Planning process, which includes:

  • Establishing policy by determining how the institution will manage and control identified risks;
  • Allocating knowledgeable personnel and sufficient financial resources to properly implement the BCP;
  • Ensuring that the BCP is independently reviewed and approved (annually);
  • Ensuring employees are trained and aware of their roles in the implementation of the BCP;
  • Ensuring the BCP is regularly tested on an enterprise-wide basis;
  • Reviewing the BCP testing program and test results on a regular basis; and
  • Ensuring the BCP is continually updated to reflect the current operating environment.”

Resilience begins with defining the mission, setting the policy, rolling up our sleeves, and never looking back. The good news is that a field-tested roadmap (framework) has been developed to build and maintain a robust BCM program.

planning

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.

 

AdvantageCIO

Professional Services available include:

  • Business Continuity Planning and Resilience Testing
  • Information Security Risk Assessment
  • Comprehensive Information Security Program (CISP)
  • Staff Security Training
  • IT Examination and Audit Preparation
  • IT Strategy Consulting
CU*Answers Network Services

Managed Services available include:

  • Network Management and Monitoring
  • Continuous Data Protection (CDP) including off-site data storage
  • Virtual Branch / Virtual Office
Updated
February 11, 2015

[The Pulse] 2019 Business Continuity Plan (mid-year revision) Now Available

[The Pulse] 2019 Business Continuity Plan (mid-year revision) Now Available

As your core data processor, we continue to invest in high availability and recovery strategies to ensure that the products and services you count on us for are there when you need them. Implementing those strategies and responding when uncertainty happens requires a well-designed and thoroughly tested plan. We’ve recently updated the 2019 CU*Answers Business… Read more »

Aug 1, 2019

What to do When Plan B Fails

The 2019 Polar Vortex and extreme winter weather with wide spread power outages throughout the Great Lakes area put many organization’s recovery plan to the test, including ours at CU*Answers. You develop and plan for interruptions, but what do you do when Plan B is not enough; when Plan B fails? Our primary data center… Read more »

Mar 22, 2019

[The Pulse] Emergency HA Rollover Results Now Available

[The Pulse] Emergency HA Rollover Results Now Available

HA Rollover Results Now Available Rollover: February 8 – 17 Now available for your review is a summary of the recent HA (high-availability) rollover event, performed February 8 – 17.  In the report, you will find details about the rollover and recovery effort, including challenges observed, lessons learned, and recommendations for improving the rollover process…. Read more »

Feb 22, 2019

[The Pulse] 2019 Business Continuity Plan Now Available

[The Pulse] 2019 Business Continuity Plan Now Available

CU*Answers Business Continuity Plan: 2019 Release Now Available   As your core data processor, we continue to invest in high availability and recovery strategies to ensure that the products and services you count on us for are there when you need them. Implementing those strategies and responding when uncertainty happens requires a well-designed and thoroughly… Read more »

Jan 25, 2019

CU*Answers holds 7th annual Continuity Awareness Day

On January 23, 2019, CU*Answers held its 7th annual corporate “Continuity Awareness Day”. This annual event is an essential component of their business continuity and incident response awareness program. “Launching our awareness campaign each January sets the tone for the remainder of the year,” said Jim Lawrence, vice president of Business Continuity. “It sends the […]

Jan 25, 2019

Let Us Help Design Your Business Continuity Awareness and Training Plan!

Let Us Help Design Your Business Continuity Awareness and Training Plan!

A credit union can invest in the latest technology, write a comprehensive recovery plan, and check all of the compliance boxes, but if effective response and recovery is not a normal part of the day-to-day activities and embedded in the corporate culture, business disruptions will catch you by surprise, last longer than they should, and… Read more »

Jan 8, 2019

[The Pulse] 2018 Statement Printing Recovery Test Results Available

[The Pulse] 2018 Statement Printing Recovery Test Results Available

ATTENTION ONLINE AND SELF-PROCESSING CREDIT UNIONS: 2018 Statement Printing Recovery Test Results Available At CU*Answers, we take our Business Continuity Program very seriously. We work extremely hard to design and develop the tools you need to best serve your members and succeed in the marketplace. And we work even harder to make sure that those… Read more »

Nov 29, 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