Bank of America And IBM Sign Major Financial Services Specific Cloud Deal

By Amit Chowdhry ● November 6, 2019
  • IBM announced it launched a new financial services-specific cloud technology in collaboration with Bank of America

Today IBM announced it has built financial services-specific cloud technology in collaboration with Bank of America. This makes Bank of America the first major bank to use the platform. And this platform is designed for meeting high regulatory and security standards that are necessary for the financial sector.

“This is one of the most important collaborations in the financial services industry cloud space,” said Cathy Bessant, chief operations and technology officer at Bank of America. “This industry-first platform will allow Bank of America to use the public cloud, putting data security, resiliency, privacy and customer information safety needs at the forefront of decision making. By setting a standard that addresses the concern of hosting highly-confidential information, we aim to drive the public cloud to a safety level that is unmatched.”

Internally, Bank of America has started focusing on internal cloud computing capabilities. And in the past few years, Bank of America reduced its server count from over 200,000 to 70,000 servers. Plus it reduced the number of data centers from 67 to 23. As a result, Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan is expecting to see $2 billion in savings per year at the company. But Bank of America still utilizes cloud services from external vendors as third parties can offer plans between 20% to 30% cheaper.

“The financial services-ready public cloud represents an ongoing focus from Bank of America, IBM and Promontory to help develop a technology ecosystem where regulations can be addressed,” added Bridget van Kralingen, Senior Vice President of Global Industries, Clients, and Platforms & Blockchain at IBM. “Together we plan to help our customer address their ongoing compliance requirements, coupled with highly scalable, standardized capabilities that will be built to help serve today’s modern financial services industry.”

It is essential for banks to invest in cloud computing technology since transactions are becoming more digital. This customized platform can transfer data quickly, ensure security, and prevent outages.

“We recognize that we must help create an environment where financial services institutions can address their regulatory requirements and expectations,” explained Promontory Founder and CEO Gene Ludwig. “Bank of America, IBM and Promontory are uniquely suited to help give the industry and vendors confidence in the quality of this cloud platform.”

Reuters pointed out that cloud services used by banks have come under scrutiny following a major data breach at Capital One. And there are concerns about the risks associated with the reliance on third-party cloud providers. So lawmakers are asking regulators to consider direct oversight of the cloud services that the major tech companies are providing to banks such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud.