Credit and fraud aren't buzzwords, but they can be buzz saws. Unless banks can demonstrate publicly verifiable risk management, successful fraud prevention and credible governance, all of the tech firms on this year's list will have a smaller marketplace of financial clients to sell to in the future.

"GRC (governance, risk and compliance) is the basics and fundamentals. You want to prove all numbers that you have in your financial report are accurate, and demonstrate that you're doing the right thing from a sustainability standpoint; that you're not just looking at quarterly earnings," says Jonathan Hornby, director of worldwide and performance for SAS.

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