For innovation within financial services, being leading edge — and cutting-edge — means, well, moving to the edge.
So says Cassandra Dixon, senior manager, solutions engineering at Fastly, who told PYMNTS that edge cloud technologies can help services and tech come to market with speed. But legacy systems, she said, are holding financial institutions (FIs) back from their goals — and ability — to deliver user content.
At a high level, she said, application programming interfaces (APIs) enable firms like Fastly to help FIs deploy, build and send information. And upon delivering that information, several things happen that FIs must keep track of: integration, performance and security threats.
The advent of edge computing — where data is brought closer to where it is needed — can take some of that burden away. There’s the opportunity, Dixon said, to cache data that could not have been cached before.
“Before, most people thought of CDNs (content delivery networks) as just delivering or caching static content. Now, you can do more with private information, but you have to personalize it so that the content is dynamic … and for the FIs, there is more ‘bang for the buck,’” she added.
For FIs, cross-collaboration is important in delivering content that adds more complexity, and complexity slows things down — so there are ways to get some of that complexity off of your original origin, where your data center is.
As Dixon told PYMNTS, FIs’ technology is getting “bogged down” with outmoded systems that don’t harness the ability to get real-time information and granular insight into transactions. APIs can integrate all of this into banks’ platforms with speed and agility.
Speed And Agility
It used to take hours to validate content, Dixon noted. And, she added, it’s possible to validate content too quickly. The dual advantages of APIs and edge cloud mean that FIs can push information to data centers into the edge environment, enabling them to embrace security, image optimization (it’s important to keep websites and apps looking as good as possible, she said), geo-fencing personalization, routing requests and other functions.
“With an edge cloud solution, you are now able to have a lot of that logic closer to the users. So, for example, if you’re trying to do performance insights and understand how your customer base is using your financial institution and how are they getting their information, people want to know things quickly,” she said.
Individuals will want to know when their account is updated, for example, so pushing the performance insight closer to them will help speed up the delivery of that information.
Asked by PYMNTS about guiding principles as FIs choose edge cloud partners, Dixon pointed to a few overarching principles: “There are a couple of things to keep in mind when looking at content delivery networks. How do you control the update of information, and do you have the flexibility to do that? Are you getting some of that information from your CDN, and is it integrating into some of the tools you’re working with?”
APIs, she said, can work with different, continuous integration or development tools. FIs can then focus on building new insights, building new products or making sure that the company is running smoothly.
“With an edge cloud, you’re taking some of that burden off [operations], so you can still process data and information faster and let technology handle the burden,” Dixon said.