Hana Bank has stepped up its mobile banking for foreigners by launching a smartphone-based platform that enables domestic and overseas money transfers with fewer steps than ever. The move comes as Korean banks invest in mobile banking to appeal to customers’ convenience and preference for contactless services in the COVID-19 era,
The “Hana EZ” app allows foreigners to easily transfer money in Korea and abroad using only an account password and a PIN. This setup eliminates the need for the complex authentication procedures of the past involving a digital certificate and a security token. A biometric login using one’s fingerprint is also offered.
Alongside domestic transfers, the Hana EZ app provides users a choice of four overseas money transfer methods. Besides the standard Account Remittance and its popular ‘easy-one’ Remittance Service, the app introduces the JUST transfer for the first time. JUST transfer provides instant money transfers to almost anyone in the world by tapping Western Union’s global money pickup network.
Hana Bank has cut remittance fees by 40% for Hana EZ money transfers made in 2020 to encourage more foreigners to explore the Hana EZ app. When wiring abroad via Hana EZ this year, Account Remittances cost only 5,000 won total (versus 8,000 won/10,000-won standard amount); and a JUST Remittance costs only US$3.99 (versus $10/$14 standard). This offer is in place through Dec. 31, 2020.
Also, reflecting Korea’s growing diversity, the app supports foreigners in 15 foreign languages: English, Chinese, Thai, Vietnamese, Filipino, Sinhalese, Burmese, Mongolian, Indonesian, Khmer, Japanese, Bengali, Uzbek, Russian, and Nepali. It also provides a direct phone link to consultants speaking Asian languages.
Hana EZ taps artificial intelligence and big data technology to help users find a beneficiary bank by typing in the account number and bank code. It can even calculate money transfer delivery times by taking into account time differences and holidays in respective countries. This service is currently limited to European destination banks, but is being expanded.
Hana Bank also embraces Koreans who regularly send money to children studying abroad, by reducing the need for face-to-face transactions normally required when handling international wire services. Parents can make direct wire transfers to students abroad after submitting a school transcript, proof of enrollment, and overseas bank information.
“We worked closely with our foreign customers to develop the Hana EZ app,” a Hana Bank official said. “We studied their needs and inconveniences while banking with domestic banks. Hana Bank will continue to introduce more products and services to accommodate our foreign customers.”