Security\u2002Moving money from a personal investment account can be a complex process involving trips to the bank, fees and paper forms designed to ensure compliance with regulations. And it can be full of stress, because such transactions often occur during a life milestone, such as retirement.\n \n The Vanguard Group, which offers consumers retirement, college savings and other investment accounts, has simplified this multistep transaction process using biometric voice-verification software. The project, which earned a CIO 100 Award, lets customers access their accounts and complete transactions over the phone, using their voices as passwords. \u201cThe ultimate security measure is something you are,\u201d says Vanguard CIO Paul Heller. \u201cVoice is actually the most secure\u201d form of identification, he adds, because each person\u2019s voiceprint is unique.\n \n John Marcante, an executive with Vanguard\u2019s retail services group, says transactions that once took three weeks can now be completed in three minutes. Previously, Vanguard employees would scan and verify paperwork for 96 types of transactions. That process requires a phone conversation. Now 70 percent of transactions can be completed using biometric authentication.\n \n The system uses software from Nuance that captures individuals\u2019 vocal inflections and other details, making it more secure than a plain recording. To enroll in the service, customers call Vanguard\u2019s 800 number and record the phrase, \u201cAt Vanguard, my voice is my password.\u201d The verification system captures three voice samples and sends the customer a confirmation email. When the customer clicks on the link in the email, the service is activated. The process takes about a minute. The service is available on mobile or landline telecommunications networks, though Vanguard hopes to offer it for VoIP calls as well.\n \n Vanguard is rolling out the verification system to its high-net-worth customers this year and will offer it to all customers in 2012. Marcante says teamwork between IT and business leaders made the project successful. Vanguard had tested biometrics a decade ago, but the disconnect between IT, research and business leaders was too great for the project to move forward. Marcante says this time, Vanguard realized that \u201cinnovation comes from an overlap of multiple disciplines.\u201d\n No Line at the RegisterMobile Devices\u2002To alleviate long lines on crazy shopping days like Black Friday, CIO 100 winner Gap deployed the iPod Touch as a mobile point of sale (POS) system in more than 100 Old Navy stores. Using the devices, employees can ring up merchandise from anywhere in the store.\n \n \n \n By creating an extra register when the regular ones are occupied, Gap says the iPod Touch will reduce the number of customers who abandon their purchases when lines are too long. The device connects to a store\u2019s POS system to look up merchandise and prices, conduct credit card transactions and process gift card purchases. The devices can be connected to bar code scanners to scan merchandise tags, and to wireless printers to provide receipts.\t\n Building Smarter CondosInfrastructure\u2002Condominium developer Tridel, a CIO 100 winner, has a vision for the home of the future: one that runs services for residents, such as security, utility metering and telecommunications, from a building-wide IP network.\n \n \n \n With an entire building on one network, residents can, for example, adjust their thermostats using a Web or mobile application. Internet costs can be reduced because Tridel purchases access for the building, rather than individual units. \u201cIf you look at Internet as a utility and assume everyone wants [it], the price drops dramatically,\u201d says Ted Maulucci, CIO of Tridel.\n \n Tridel has piloted the infrastructure, including a virtual concierge service that residents will be able to access from a lobby computer screen. Using videoconferencing, residents will talk to a concierge who can help them with such needs as getting packages delivered or admitting visitors. The first condos with the new infrastructure will come to market in 2013.\n\n Follow Editorial Assistant Lauren Brousell on Twitter: @lbrousell.