Nowadays, the financial services industry is more critical than ever. Professional services involving the investment, lending, and management of money and assets keep society running on all levels. From private individuals to global trade and commerce, there is a full digitalization of financial services rapidly under way – and cybercriminals are taking note.
Cyber Stats in Financial Services
70% ranked cybersecurity as a top concern: According to the Sixth Annual Bank Survey by the Conference of State Bank Supervisors, 70% of those surveyed ranked cybersecurity as their top concern.
Cost of a cyberattack is $18.3m: In a report from Accenture and the Ponemon Institute “Unlocking the Value of Improved Cybersecurity Protection,” they claim that the cost of cyberattacks is highest in the banking industry, reaching $18.3 million annually per company.
70% of companies experienced a security incident: According to the 2019 report by Clearswift, “The Unknown Threat Report“, 70% of financial companies have experienced a cyber security incident in the past year.
10% of IT budget is spent on cyber: According to Deloitte’s report, “Pursuing Cybersecurity Maturity at Financial Institutions“, these institutions shell out on average 0.3% of revenue and 10% of their IT budget to cybersecurity, compared to 6.1% of IT budget and 1.2 – 3% of revenue for retail and wholesale services.
352,771 exposed sensitive files in the financial sector: According to the 2019 Data Risk Report by Varonis, the Financial services had 352,771 exposed sensitive files on average while Healthcare, Pharma and Biotech have 113,491 files on average — the highest when comparing industries.
26% of financial institutions suffered a destructive cyberattack: A research project performed by Carbon Black on major security breaches found that 26% of surveyed financial institutions admitted they suffered a destructive cyberattack. When compared to the numbers at the beginning of 2018, this represented an increase of 160%. And 79% of the corporate information security officers surveyed said attacks on financial institutions were becoming more and more sophisticated and destructive.
Financial institutions are facing numerous cyber-related challenges
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the European Central Bank and other financial institutions have suffered a significant increase in cyberattacks. Just like in other sectors, the pandemic has triggered a sudden and rapid increase of employees working from home. The need for digitalization of banking services has also strongly increased due to this pandemic. While cyber threats are not new, this strange and uncertain context has changed the cybersecurity game and risks are more present. For financial institutions, there are 3 main cybersecurity-related challenges:
- Exposure to cybercrime for employees working from home
- Deployment of secured digital channels for banking service provision
- FI ability to detect and respond to cyber threats
As we said earlier, financial services are critical to our well-being. The 2008 and 2009 meltdown painfully reminded us of how important it is to keep our financial institutions functioning. This is why cybersecurity will be an ongoing concern for financial services. A security breach could cause a global financial catastrophe, if not the coup de grâce to covid-19. In order to protect these entities from cybercrime, the use of trusted data is a must. Monitoring and using security- performance data to implement an efficient and consistent cybersecurity strategy is the best way to ensure cybersecurity. When it comes to cyber protection, manually collected metrics are often approximate, or outdated. In other words, unreliable. This, obviously, poses a threat to financial institutions, who can ill afford to take such risks. If chief information security officers aren’t focused on automating high-quality metrics and the use of data to ensure a consistent and effective level of protection, the institution, up to the board is unwittingly accepting risk which has a direct impact on the bottom line vis-à-vis their clients who entrust the institution to protect their financial assets. Client trust is the bottom line for financial services and any security breach erodes user trust. Once a client bails on a financial issue on a trust-based issue, well, he’s gone for good.