The Pulse (10-15-14)



The Pulse (10-15-2014)

October 15, 2014 ● Volume 03, Issue 41


The Pulse Archive

Credit Union News


MnCUN’s Cummins pushes for greater data security in Duluth News Tribune opinion piece

Last week, Minnesota Credit Union Network President & CEO Mark D. Cummins penned an op-ed in the Duluth News Tribune calling for legislative action to hold merchants accountable for damages occurred by breaches to their systems.

In his piece, Cummins voiced concern that data-security standards are inconsistent between industries. According to Cummins, merchants are not subject to the same stringent federal data-protection standards that credit unions and other financial institutions are under the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act.

 “Unless and until merchants are held accountable for the damages data breaches cause financial institutions and consumers, credit unions have little confidence that merchants will be sufficiently motivated to properly secure their systems,” said Cummins. “Ultimately, that means consumers will continue to absorb the costs of merchants’ chronic data breaches.”

Cummins notes that payment-system innovations such as EMV, tokenization and other technologies to improve data security are a step in the right direction, but maintains that Congress needs to address the issue of data breaches by making sure merchants and financial institutions alike play by the same set of data-security rules and that merchants who hold consumer data and allow that data to be breached are held responsible for the costs incurred by others.

Credit unions are encouraged to take the following action steps:

  1. Visit the GREAT webpage and take action by contacting your Members of Congress.
  2. Make use of the tools and resources in CUNA’s Data Breach Toolkit to engage and activate your employees and members. These resources include talking points, email correspondence to members, etc.
  3. Stay engaged with the campaign by following the Twitter handle @CUNAadvocacy and #StoptheBreaches, as well as the CUNA Advocacy Facebook page.
  4. Continue to stay abreast of new developments by checking the latest news at following the social media platforms above. 

Also, CUNA launched a national survey earlier this month to determine the extent of damage done to credit unions by the Home Depot data breach. This information will be vital in convincing policymakers that changes must be made in how data breaches are handled and prevented. CUNA has asked for survey replies by Friday, Oct. 24, and all Minnesota credit unions should complete the survey to help capture the most accurate information about the impact of data breaches.

Follow this link to complete the data breach survey

The following information will be needed to complete the survey:

  • The total number of debit and credit cards currently issued to members;
  • The number of cards that were affected by the Home Depot data breach;
  • The number of cards reissued or planned to be reissued as a result of the breach; and
  • Estimates of the costs the credit union has incurred as a result of the breach for card reissuance, fraud and all other costs.

By taking action, credit unions will tell Congress that they need to act to stop data breaches and will help raise awareness about the impact data breaches have on their members. More information about data breaches, and action that can be taken is available on the Data Breach page of the MnCUN website.



Gov. Dayton declares Oct. 16 Credit Union Day in Minnesota

Gov. Mark Dayton recently signed a proclamation declaring Thursday, Oct. 16, 2014, as Credit Union Day in Minnesota. The proclamation coincides with International Credit Union Day and this year’s theme of "Local Service. Global Good."


Gov. Dayton’s proclamation states, “Credit unions embrace a ‘people-helping-people’ philosophy by pooling personal resources and leadership abilities for the good of the cooperative, empowering members to improve their financial futures and uniting to help those in need.” It also proclaims that “credit unions have demonstrated outstanding leadership throughout the communities in which they serve since they were founded more than 150 years ago.”


International Credit Union Day celebrates the history, tradition and spirit of the international credit union movement. The day is set aside to recognize the cooperative history of credit unions and their achievements and to promote the difference credit unions make in members’ lives in countries around the globe.


“Credit unions across Minnesota put the mission of ‘Local Service. Global Good.’ into action every day, said Minnesota Credit Union Network President & CEO Mark D. Cummins. “International Credit Union Day is a great opportunity to recognize the difference credit unions make in communities in Minnesota and throughout the world.”


For more information, visit the International Credit Union Day page of the Network website.



FHLB Des Moines and Seattle Sign Definitive Agreement

On Thursday, Sept. 25, the Federal Home Loan Banks of Des Moines and Seattle announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement to merge. This historic event was attended by Federal Housing Finance Agency Director Melvin Watt, who has publically commented that he is supportive of a potential merger.

While the approval and execution of a merger agreement are important steps forward in a merger process, they are not the last. The merger is subject to certain closing conditions, including approval by the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) and ratification by the member-owners of the Des Moines and Seattle Banks. The Banks hope to complete the merger application and submit it to the FHFA in the fourth quarter of 2014 and it is anticipated that the member vote will take place in the first half of 2015.

Under the terms of the merger agreement, Dick Swanson and Mike Wilson would be co-executive leaders. Swanson would serve as chief executive officer and Wilson as president. The agreed upon headquarters will be located in Des Moines but a strong customer service presence will still remain in Seattle.

"Both the Des Moines and Seattle Banks are committed to maintaining a high level of member service as a combined entity and ensuring that a potential merger does not jeopardize the fundamental value of membership – access to liquidity and low-cost funding," said Federal Home Loan Bank of Des Moines representative Kayla Breja. "It is expected that FHLB Des Moines members will have access to an expanded suite of products and collateral categories after the merger. However, changes to the Des Moines Bank’s capital plan, credit policies and mortgage services are not anticipated."



Calling all young professionals: Join The Crew for learning & networking on Wednesday, Nov. 5

Young credit union professionals are invited to attend the upcoming Crew roundtable on Wednesday, Nov. 5. Join Luke Riordan, CEO of social media marketing company DAYTA Marketing, members of the Minnesota Credit Union Network staff, and your industry peers at this informative networking event.

Riordan will speak with attendees about social media and marketing strategies for credit unions and his journey of becoming a CEO before age 35. MnCUN will discuss key initiatives and activities, engagement opportunities, and the Crew Ambassador program. In addition, the session will allow time for attendees to engage in an open forum conversation about industry issues, challenges and other hot topics.

To learn more about this networking group, visit The Crew page of the Network website.



Foundation awards $7,500 in financial education grants to three CUs in October

The Minnesota Credit Union Foundation – with a mission to provide resources for credit unions and communities to prosper and thrive – recently awarded $7,500 in grants to assist with implementing financial education projects.


"These programs are an outstanding illustration of how credit unions put their members and communities first, understanding that improving personal finance skills among all consumers has a positive impact on our state as a whole,” said Foundation Chairman Dave Larson. "The Foundation is pleased to have an opportunity to support fresh, innovative initiatives that provide much-needed financial education."

Fall 2014 Financial Education Grant recipients include:

  • Anoka Hennepin Credit Union
    Anoka Hennepin Credit Union is creating a free youth checking account with financial education ties. This program rewards young members, ages 13-23, for taking part in online financial education seminars, with the goal of preparing participants for college and beyond.
  • Cook Area Credit Union
    Working to expand on its financial education ties in northern Minnesota, Cook Area Credit Union is seeking to establish a student-run credit union at a second Kindergarten-Grade 12 school in Independent School District #2142. Building on past experience, CACU will work through a student advisory board to develop curriculum and provide personal finance education to various grade levels in the school.
  • Wakota Federal Credit Union
    Promoting wellness through the ties between food, fitness and finance, Wakota Federal Credit Union, Friendchip Farm and St. Paul Farmers’ Markets recently partnered to enhance their community impact. In addition to promoting healthy food choices and exercise, this program will incorporate personal finance education through events at the credit union and online, as well as teaching classroom presentations in local schools and colleges.

The Foundation Board of Directors evaluated applications based on a variety of factors, including credit union value, community impact, collaboration, creativity, and past involvement in and support of Foundation activities. Non-credit union organizations may also apply for grant funding, but must partner with a Minnesota credit union and demonstrate how the project will impact credit unions and their members.


Initiatives must have measurable outcomes, and recipients complete a written follow-up report submitted within 30 days of the project completion.


Additional information and details are available on the Financial Education Grants page of the Foundation website.



“Why I Love My Credit Union” video gets around

Since its release last month, the Minnesota Credit Union Network has been sharing the love – in the form of a video compilation highlighting credit union facts and opinions from members around the state. The Network is encouraging credit unions to share the video with their members in their branches and on social media.

This year, the Minnesota Credit Union launched its Why I Love My Credit Union Campaign. The Network asked credit union professionals and members to answer one simple question: “Why do you love your credit union?” Answers to this question have been captured in a variety of forms: video, online submissions, Facebook, Twitter, and postcards. The stories are shared on the Why I Love My Credit Union website.

To date, MnCUN has received over 400 story submissions from credit union members across Minnesota, sharing what it is about their credit union that they love. In order to assist credit unions in their member engagement and outreach, the Network has created a toolkit, available online, to promote the Why I Love my Credit Union campaign.

Below are some of the resources available to credit unions:

With questions, or to receive a spreadsheet including all Why I Love my Credit Union stories collected from your credit union, please contact MnCUN Political Advocacy Director Ryan Smith by email or call (651)288-5533


Credit Unions in the News

Follow the links on the stories below to read more about the outstanding programs, new initiatives and well-deserved recognition received by your peers recently. Got news of your own? Send stories, pitches, press releases and published articles to MnCUN Director of Communications Connie Kuhn.  

First Alliance CU welcomes Nelson as new board member

Filene welcomes City & County CU’s Schewe to prestigious i3 Innovation Program

TopLine FCU to hold identity theft prevention workshop

HomeTown CU collecting donations for “A Night for Nicky”



Tomorrow is International Credit Union Day – celebrate by becoming a member of GREAT!


Lending a Hand to Minnesota's Credit Unions

NCUA issues new bulletin on restructured TDR loans

CFPB updates Readiness Guide, incorporates TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure Rule


Compliance Q & A


Out for Comment

FHFA extends comment period on proposed rule amending FHLB membership


If this describes you, then you are invited to join The Crew. This group 
If this describes you, then you are invited to join The Crew. This group 

Minnesota Credit Union Network
555 Wabasha Street N, Suite 200
St. Paul, MN 55102

(651) 288-5170
(800) 477-1034