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Lasco Newsletter

March 2011

With the spring season just around the corner, I hope you are ready for some changes! Lasco sure has experienced a few in the past year. Our most recent changes are noted in our "In-House News" section in this letter, and I know you will agree that in order to continue growing and improving: change is necessary. We are always looking for ways to improve our company and I want to express my appreciation and gratitude for all of the thoughts and ideas that many of you have expressed. As you may know, Lasco has sent quite a few surveys in the past year. The goal of these surveys has been to improve our company beyond what we see today. All of the ideas and opinions that we have gathered have already helped our team tremendously. Thank you again, to all who have contributed to this process.   

Warmest Regards,


Dennis VanLandschoot

President & CEO                                                                     800-800-6197 Ext. 1051
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Thank you to all who participated in our free drawing.
Upcoming Conferences:
FIS Annual Client Conference April 11-14 at the Frontier Airlines Center in Milwaukee

Did You Know?

In the Year 1775American colonists issued paper currency for the Continental Congress to finance the Revolutionary War. The notes were backed by the "anticipation" of tax revenues. Without solid backing and easily counterfeited, the notes quickly became devalued, giving rise to the phrase "not worth a continental."


Source: History of Paper Money from Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco

FIS Product Spotlight

BIC (Business Intelligence Center) is an FIS data mining tool used in analyzing, organizing and streamlining customer data to allow financial institutions to access the data to create business reports.  There are literally thousands of customer data fields the financial institution has access to, which allows them to learn more about who their customers are.  BIC reports are utilized by many different divisions of the bank, from operations staff to Members of the Board.  The BIC tool is also valuable in assisting the financial institution to prep for audits and exams.   Some BIC reports can be as simple as listing the customers who have a deposit balance over a certain dollar amount, or as complex as a deposit stratification report which shows the percentage that each deposit type makes up of the financial institutions total deposit portfolio.  BIC reports have assisted in effective marketing campaigns, specifically targeting a certain customer demographic or attribute, such as customers in a certain zip code that have a loan account at the financial institution but not a deposit account.   

As you've seen in just the few examples above, BIC can be a very powerful tool if utilized effectively.  The financial institutions that do have the benefit of the BIC tool available to them,  have credited the tool as having saved employees many hours of data gathering that would have otherwise been done manually.

For more information on FIS Products, please contact Kellie Johnson, VP of Bank Services 906-228-1068

Unified Communications:
In today's business world, it is imperative to have as much information at your fingertips as possible. If you have a smartphone, you know the convenience of being able to sync to your email at work. Now, imagine being able to see where your employees are with just a click of your phone or mouse.... to know who's available and who's in a meeting, who's on the phone and who's on the road... Intrigued?
Enterprise Systems Group has been working together with Lasco to bring you the best possible options for your business. Learn more about Unified Communications by reading the following article in the ESG Newsletter titled "Create a Mobile Office for Employees"


More information also available on the following website:

We Want To Hear From YOU!


We are looking for topics of interest for our upcoming newsletters. Please let us know what topics are of highest interest to you!

In-House News...


Ryan Valiquette

Ryan Valiquette       

 - Lasco's Newest Employee!

Ryan Valiquette, Network Support Technician can be reached at 906-228-1056 or Ryan 

comes to us from the Gladstone area. Ryan has earned an Associate Degree in Computer Systems Technology from Bay de Noc Community College, as well as a Bachelor of Science Degree in Computer Networking from Lake Superior State University. Ryan's diligence in his studies earned him Summa Cum Laude Honors as well as "Outstanding Technology Graduate of the Year" and we are proud to have him as a member of the Lasco Team. Ryan's experience includes Network Support Specialist, Systems/Network Technician and also Systems/Network Administrator. Outside of work, Ryan enjoys spending time with his wife and son and is also involved at his church. We look forward to introducing Ryan to all of our clients as time permits.  


 - Employee Changes: Amy Elliott has recently joined the Tech Support Team and will be assisting in the call center. Mark Niemi will head up our Call Support Center and continue to assist with open tickets and support issues. Al Hawker will continue to oversee the support of our Business Clients' needs. Ryan Wellman will be transitioning into a new position as well to assist Tim Shandonay with our Financial Institution Clients' needs. 


  • Peoples State Bank renews their contract with Lasco for 5 years!!  Thank you PSB!! 
  • Welcome to Lasco!! Waldo State Bank and mBank recently signed new contracts!! Thank you to all involved!!

Social Media 

Ever wonder how YouTube works? Or how it can improve your business? The first step is creating an account on, next you will want to take a look around using the "browse" button. You can even use filters on the site to narrow down your categories of interest. Once you are more familiar with the type of videos that are currently gaining the most "views", you can go to your account and upload a video of your own. After uploading your video you can use the resources provided on YouTube to track the number of times it is viewed. It is also a great marketing approach to post the YouTube video on your website's homepage. This will guarantee immediate viewing by your clients and will hopefully branch out as your clients "tweet" about it or "like" it using their arsenal of social media sites. 

For more how-to's or in-depth YouTube questions, visit the website's "About" page by clicking on this link: 


Just remember to keep your target audience in mind when choosing the video you want to upload. Humorous videos seem to be the "norm" for getting higher traffic to your website, but you know your audience best! Give your audience something to talk about, laugh about and share with others in their sphere. Before you know it, you will be adding new clients!


If you have any questions or concerns regarding Social Media, please contact us today.

Robert Baer, VP of Bank Services 906-228-1055 
Kellie Johnson, VP of Bank Services 906-228-1068
Mobile Banking


Can you believe how mobile phones have evolved? We started with the ability to just send and receive calls from a large bag phone that still needed to be plugged into a power source, to now the current phones that fit in your pocket and do so much more. The same can be said for the mobile banking landscape. It has gone from using the phone's mobile web browser to view your financial institution's internet banking site to having an application that is more user friendly. Even the applications are evolving from just basic account balance and account transfers to a growing list of different types of services. Below are just some of the available services you may see in today's applications for mobile banking:


  • Peer to Peer Payments                       
  • Consumer Check Deposit
  • Tap and Go Payments
  • Personal Finance Management
  • Mini Statements 
  • Payment and Account Alerts
  • ATM Locator
  • Bill Payment
  • Coupons and Vouchers 

The Landscape of mobile banking is constantly changing and at times it is hard to keep up. We are already hearing talks about companies working on the ability of your mobile device to replace your wallet. There was also an article that mentioned that by 2014, roughly 58% of U.S. adults with mobile phones are expected to be using mobile banking. Just looking around today, you can see that just about everyone is carrying some sort of mobile phone. The other thing to keep in mind would be the new mobile technologies such as iPads and Tablets that are all the buzz today, they also have the ability to use both Wi-Fi and the cell phone networks. The users of those devices will also be looking for the same mobile applications as phone users. One day soon (if not already) you just might start hearing your financial institution say, "We have an app for that".

For more information on Mobile Banking, please contact Robert Baer, VP of Bank Services 906-228-1055

Locked Out of Your Account... Again??

One of the most frequent calls we receive is regarding user account lockout. This happens when a user incorrectly enters their password 3 or more times. Users often make their passwords harder to remember than they need to. Complexity requirements for most networks require a password to contain at least three of the four character types and be at least 8 characters long. The four types of characters are UPPERCASE, lowercase, numbers (1, 2, 3...), and symbols (~, !, @, #, $...). This may look to a user that they need to use an overly complex password due to the requirements. Example: "@47!!lascoN".


One of my network professors told a story about his youngest daughter's password for a Disney website. He watched her type in the password and it was thirty-seven characters long. When he asked her why her password was so long she said that the site required the password to be at least six characters long. So she used: mickeyminniegoofyplutoaladinsnowwhite which was seven "characters" long.


Some of the easiest passwords to remember are often friends, family, birthdates, seasons. To make the password easy to remember but still complex consider making a sentence or phrase. Example: Ilikewinter. The passphrase in the example is twelve characters long and meets the complexity requirements by having uppercase and lowercase letters and a period for the symbol. Other examples could be: 1stQuarter2011, !!Iamexcited!!, 123SHIFT!@#.


One of the biggest problems when it comes to having a secure password is not so much the complexity but having a password that is too hard to remember. When a user has trouble remembering a password they will almost always write it down in an easily accessible location. Having an easily accessible password can lead to ID theft. Another problem with having hard to remember passwords is that often times a user will use that same password in multiple locations so that they remember it. The problem can then expand from having one exposed account to any other common account. An identity thief could easily setup a social networking site, smart phone app, or web-game that requires a simple username and password. The thief would then use those credentials on other common sites to attempt to gain access.


Having a long list in your mind of all of your passwords may seem like a daunting task. Try to make it easier on yourself by adding a few words to the password. If you have trouble remembering lots of very different passwords try to use the same password but add the name of the application, website, or game that is requiring the password. Example: Ilikewinter!YouTube.


There are a lot of different variations out there to make your password secure . Find one that works for you and make a scheme that you are able to change once every 90 days.


Article submitted by Ryan Wellman, Infrastructure Technician you can reach Ryan by calling 906-228-1033 or emailing him at

Green Tips! 

We have been researching different ways to make your company more environmentally-friendly and these are a few of our suggestions to get started: 

  • Purchase recycled or environmentally-friendly office supplies/equipment/vehicles, etc. (recycled paper, pens made from recycled plastic, etc.)
  • Purchase from "Green" companies (HP recycles all of their toners free)
  • Only print when necessary - or print only the 1 page you need out of a document
  • Utilize e-billing/e-statements both for your company's billing purposes as well as your payments to other companies
  • Try using a Hallmark e-card account or Constant Contact to send your company Christmas cards
  • Set computers to hibernate or sleep when inactive - do not use screensavers
  • Turn off lights when rooms aren't in use
  • Turn off all: Lights, Computers, Monitors, Printers, Copiers (Office Machines) at the end of every work day
  • Change to energy-efficient lighting
  • Place recycle bins in break room
  • Teleconference or walk (when appropriate) instead of driving to a meeting
  • Employees can carpool, walk or bike to work
  • Program your heating to a cooler temperature when the office is not in use

There are many great sources online, if you are interested in more tips I've also posted some article links below:


FREE Drawing!
Win a Free Night on the Town!! Prize includes: $100 Gift Certificate to Elizabeth's Chophouse and 2 Tickets to NMU's Theatrical Production of Peter Pan on Saturday, April 16th. Simply respond to this e-newsletter before April 1st with the word GIVEAWAY in the subject line and you will be entered into the drawing.