Magazine article American Banker

Online Deposit Boxes Already Available, with Features Expanding Every Day

Magazine article American Banker

Online Deposit Boxes Already Available, with Features Expanding Every Day

Article excerpt

To the Editor:

I would like to respond to the Aug. 25 Viewpoints article "Let's Invent a Cyber Safe Deposit Box to Keep Personal Information Private" by Kimberly Hoover (page 13).

Cyber safe deposit boxes have been available for the past year. Though there are probably upward of 20 dot-coms offering virtual file storage, almost all are offered solely via the Internet. The traditional purveyors of brick-and-mortar lockboxes, the banks, have been slow to offer this service to their online banking customers, but all that is changing.

Online banking has yet to hit its stride, but the Boston-based analyst International Data Corp. projects 40 million consumers will be cyber-banking by 2003.

As bank portals become more prevalent, they will be offering more robust content. Online mortgages and auto loans, credit cards, e-commerce, and safe deposit boxes will be the rule rather than the exception.

What is exciting about these virtual storage boxes is the amount of functionality that is available to the consumer.

All of the players offer the ability to securely and selectively transfer encrypted computer files from your PC to your own password-protected box.

Some even allow you to grant access to your box to colleagues or family -- on a folder-by-folder basis. For instance, you might want to give your mother in Topeka access to your Digital Photos folder to check out the latest grandchild, but more than likely you would not let her peek at your Accountant folder.

My company, Safedepositbox.com, lets you take all of the miscellaneous pieces of paper in your life and use a simple fax machine to scan, then automatically digitize, encrypt, and store them in your virtual box. …

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