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Morgan Stanley is partnering with content management and file-sharing service Box to launch a "Digital Vault," an encrypted, cloud-based platform that enables its wealth management clients to more easily share their financial documents, The Wall Street Journal reports.
The platform makes document sharing more secure and efficient than faxing, mailing, or emailing. Either the bank or the client can upload documents — like wills, deeds, or tax documents — to the vault, and when they do, both parties will receive a notification.
Morgan Stanley’s solution utilizes Box APIs to upload documents, allowing the bank to avoid building out its own secure content management system. Box’s platform enables customers and third-party developers to create their own secure cloud-based applications in a simple way.
The platform encrypts the data when it’s being transferred and stored, and provides the bank visibility into who accesses what data and when. Morgan Stanley is also using an undisclosed third party to host the keys used to encrypt the data, meaning that the bank can encrypt or decrypt all the data that goes in and out of the digital vault, adding an extra layer of encryption beyond what Box provides.
Cloud-based solutions like Box could help more banks streamline their services while also strengthening their security:
- The digital vault could accelerate Morgan Stanley’s wealth management business, which contributes 44% of its revenue.Morgan Stanley’s wealth management business is a key segment: The firm counts 3.2 million wealth management clients and oversees nearly $2.5 trillion in client assets — for context, Bank of America will have over $2.5 trillion in client assets once its acquisition of Merril Lynch goes through. The unit saw growth in Q2 2019 despite overall drops in other business units and bolstering its document sharing could accelerate the unit’s growth by offering more a higher level of convenience. Morgan Stanley jumped from 15th to 4th place in J.D. Power’s annual study of full-service firms, and the addition of this new feature could propel customer satisfaction even further.
- Banks can use technology to offer more personalized service to high-net-worth clients. Digital tools are becoming more integral in serving wealth management clients: A shift to digital in the wealth management business gained speed about three years ago, Sal Cucchiara, chief information officer and head of wealth management technology at Morgan Stanley told The WSJ. Digital document signing, for example, is one tech-based feature that could help win high-net-worth clients. And by allowing clients to sign contracts from anywhere and immediately return them, banks can save time, and minimize losses or misplacements, too.
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