Bank of America Plans Text-Message Banking Service

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Bank of America Corp (BAC) is planning a new service that lets customers manage their accounts by text message.

The service, which will be launched in the second half of 2011, will involve two-way texting, Reuters said. Customers will be able to move money between accounts and respond to possible fraud alerts via text message.

"Two-way interactive alerts are going to become, in time, one of those must-have capabilities," said Mark Schwanhausser, senior analyst with the payments consulting firm Javelin Strategy and Research. "It's not enough to alert people to a problem, you also have to give them a way to solve the problem."

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Banks are increasingly looking to technology such as smartphones as a way to perform financial tasks that are currently done in person or with credit cards.

Bank of America is confident that consumers will be eager to sign up to the new service, Laurie Readhead, the company's ebanking chief said.

"As we allow the customer to respond and react to the message, we think that can be an accelerant of adoption," Redhead said.

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