Maintaining a Good Testing Strategy in Banking Sector
- June 12, 2020
- Noor Murtaza
Software testing has a standard set of rules and principles that stay true for all industries. However, some areas require extra dedication and attention to security issues. It is especially important in the banking sector. While testing a financial application, developers need to ensure that the application runs smoothly on all devices and browsers, is protected from the latest cyber-threats, and doesn’t hinder the business performance.
To understand how an application should be tested, first, we need to know the challenges and trends of the banking sector.
Challenges and Trends
Omni banking concept involves digital-only banks without any physical branches, allowing users to avail banking services, anytime, anywhere. Today, banks are looking to implement this idea by offering end-to-end functionality of a regular bank on the minimal and highly diverse front-end of a mobile, which is very challenging.
Web Security, Regulatory, and Compliance
Banking portals are the major target for hacking and fraudulent activities. To avoid this, banks need to focus on penetration testing to identify weaknesses in their security. Today, banks have to comply with international standards such as BASEL III, BCBS 239, FACTA, AML, SEPA, etc.
Performance failures can have serious consequences. To meet the required performance levels, banks need to take into account their infrastructure, connectivity, and integration with the back-end before acquiring the service of a performance testing company. It’s important to regularly monitor transaction spikes and perform stress and load testing to ensure support for multiple transactions at any given point in time.
Challenges in Testing Internet Banking
- Variety of browsers and internet connections
- Usage paths
- Usability testing
- Security and performance testing
Challenges in Testing Mobile Banking Applications
- A broad range of devices
- Configuration and design vulnerabilities
- Security testing
- Time to market
- Banks must have a clearly-defined end-to-end testing methodology
- Perform overall testing based on requirements and workflows
- Perform functionality, security, and performance testing
- Test UI and UX and data integrity.
User Interface and Experience
Banks often lack computer literacy skills therefore it must be ensured that the interface is intuitive and user-friendly. Everything should be convenient and accessible with a few clicks only, whether it is adding clients and assigning new banking outputs or managing banking operations effectively. The interface should have simple graphic attributes (buttons, icons, etc.). This saves bankers a lot of time and as a result, ensures user satisfaction.
All the internal and external operations related to the banking sector must be successfully created, integrated, updated, and finally deleted. Also, all sections and dependencies must be thoroughly tested. In doing so, traceability matrix methods can be of great help.
Load and Performance
Most of the issues users face are related to load and performance. These issues adversely affect the output of almost all bank employees and as a result, makes clients unhappy. A large number of users and multiple operations running simultaneously are two of the most common causes of such inaccuracies. To deal with them, the applications should be regularly updated and should be tested periodically by a performance testing company. Failure to deliver a product on required performance levels can have serious consequences. At the very least, it can result in user resentment. The worst-case scenario can be data leakage and problems in banking. Therefore, load and performance testing is a must to limit possible risks.
Security, confidentiality, and protection of customer data against any leaks are crucial. QA engineers need to have in-depth expertise in security testing and must develop comprehensive test strategies. They must check the necessary software functionality and predict possible risks in the future. Testing online banking is almost the same as testing banking software. Online systems work 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. This makes it important for online applications to be tested for performance and load. Testers simulate all possible issues users may face to identify where the issues lie.
Why Do You Need Banking Application Testing?
- Improves the support of integrated systems: Continuous testing strategy allows the development team to prepare the product for release as it’s being created.
- Ensures that the system complies with frequently changing regulations: Testing ensures that the application is legally compliant and ready for inspection at any time.
- Improves user experience and customer retention: Testing improves customer satisfaction and improves the relationship with customers. It also increases the number of users and user retention rates. This results in reduced marketing costs.
- Ensures proper protection of sensitive data: Banks can’t afford data leaks. To protect clients’ financial assets, banks need to protect their data. Carelessness in doing so can result in fines, court cases, and even criminal prosecution.
- Checks application performance in all possible scenarios: Testing determines how much traffic the product can handle without slowing down or displaying performance errors. This helps business managers predict traffic spikes and put in additional effort as the user surge nears.
Banking applications deal with large volumes of confidential data hence, comprehensive testing is not optional. An error-prone application puts the users at risk and endangers their financial assets. Testing ensures that users will be able to perform transactions and check their account balance or status of their deposit without any errors or security concerns.