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What is cloud-based digital banking?

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Cloud technology can reshape digital banking services, making banking simpler and more convenient for customers. However, for many banks, the business processes and technology that support it are far from simple. On the technology front, digital banking already represents an increasingly complex set of connected systems that need to work together across disparate platforms. For the business, it is digitizing processes across channels that were once human-based. For the digital teams at the forefront, they need cloud technology that breaks down these barriers and can be more responsive to a rapidly evolving market by streamlining integration and deployments.

Cloud technology has other benefits besides getting new digital features in the hands of customers more quickly. It can also help digital operations meet their rigorous service obligations more efficiently with automatic provisioning, consistent policy enforcement, and traffic monitoring. This not only saves time in identifying and remediating issues, but also provides a reliable and consistent experience for your bank’s customers. Using cloud technology to make your digital operations simpler not only makes sense commercially, but can also reduce reputational damage from service disruptions.

Do banking APIs benefit from cloud?

Application programming interfaces (APIs) are an essential component to the bank's digital strategy. Whether by mandate or market demand bank’s are using APIs to expand their digital reach and tap into emerging digital ecosystems. Cloud technology can help digital teams in the bank create APIs more efficiently, but also improve security and reliability.

What is Kubernetes?

Kubernetes (also known as k8s or "kube") is an open source container orchestration platform that automates many of the manual processes involved in deploying, managing, and scaling containerized applications. For digital teams it reduces the complexity of operating their digital banking services.

The goal for many leading digital banks is to move towards a composable banking architecture supported by microservices and micro-frontends which aim to make the bank more adaptive and responsive.  Adopting this architecture with static infrastructure is difficult to do efficiently as the components are constantly being updated.  Container-based architectures address this challenge by standardizing on packaging and deployment, and shielding application teams from the complexity of the underlying infrastructure so that they can rapidly update their components more frequently.  

However, for most banks their digital banking service is  based on a mixture of capabilities that span multiple generations of technology.  Fortunately, banks can also bring their existing virtualized machines within their cloud platform alongside their cloud-native components and operate these components consistently while they gradually migrate to their target architecture. This can help to meet service level expectations by providing a consistent operating environment.

Digital architectures continue to evolve and so does the technology that supports them. Kubernetes has given rise to marketplaces that make it easier to find and consume new software without the friction of the past. This helps digital architects better respond to market demand by exploring new technologies quickly and scaling them as needed.

The confidence your banking customers have with your digital banking service can quickly erode with security breaches and unreliable service. The growing threat of criminals to breach or disrupt the bank’s digital service poses a reputational risk with both your customers and with the regulator.  

The continued growth of the technology estate for digital teams adds additional strain to existing tools and processes. Cloud platforms can help to secure the software supply chain by shifting security left. Vulnerabilities and misconfigurations can be identified in real time within the continuous delivery pipelines so the bank can maintain the strongest possible posture with it’s internal controls.

Attacks are increasing in both frequency and sophistication with data in motion across a growing range of runtimes. A service mesh is a dedicated part of the cloud platform that ensures that there aren't gaps in the security of communication between microservices.  It is a key component of implementing a zero trust architecture that bolsters API security inside and outside of the bank.

Running an efficient, always-on digital banking operation is increasingly difficult. The simple digital experience presented to the customer is backed by a growing array of transactional systems  that need to work together reliably. It can be a daunting task to run a critical banking service reliably and securely with digital banking services continuing to evolve faster than ever before and the technology environment supporting it constantly changing.

Cloud platforms were built precisely for this type of reality. For example, they can automatically detect when components are in an unhealthy state and take corrective action, such as restarting them. Circuit breakers and failover are built in capabilities to ensure microservices remain available when non-recoverable issues do arise. Automatic provisioning takes away the burden of growing the digital estate as volumes continue to grow. Other operational features provide additional capabilities when operating across both on-premise and off-premise environments. 

Whether it is automated blue/green deployments or supersonic java runtimes cloud technology is helping digital teams create reliable software, faster. With cloud technology there is no waiting on infrastructure provisioning, configuration and other setup tasks that slow down development. Kubernetes native deployment pipelines streamline the delivery of software so that teams can get digital banking services in the hands of their users faster.

Cloud also makes it easier to use the best tool for the job. Teams can select the runtime, integration and database technology that makes the most sense for the task at hand with a common cloud operating environment. This gives developers access to the latest tools and frameworks to create the types of digital services that customers crave. 

With Red Hat you have a partner that can help you grow your digital business with cloud technology that makes it easier to create the digital banking services your customers crave across any cloud environment.  

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