Cybersecurity is a key issue for investors, consumers, regulators and employees in the financial services industry all the way up to boards of directors.
As a year when major breaches were headline news draws to a close, stakeholders wonder what new cybersecurity horrors lie ahead. How bad will they be?
Cybersecurity experts at Booz Allen have looked ahead to 2015 and beyond, and identified future threats and new approaches to cybersecurity.
“When it comes to cyber, clients are wary that they are studying to fight the last war,” Bill Stewart, a Booz Allen senior vice president who heads the firm’s financial services sector, said in a statement. “They’re looking for a fundamentally different way to deal with the cyber threats of the future, based on a clear understanding of those emerging threats.
Booz Allen strives to figure out how the nature of attacks will evolve with what it call a lifecycle approach: anticipate, protect, detect, respond and recover.
“When you link together all of these segments, they become very powerful tools that can help our clients thrive in this time of increasing peril,” Booz Allen principal Albert Belman said in the statement.
Following are Booz Allen’s top financial services cybersecurity trends for 2015:
1. Third-party risk tops the list.
Companies understand the potential cyber risks associated with partners, vendors and other third parties, and are feeling more pressure from U.S. and European regulators to better manage this risk. In 2015, a shift will occur toward active cyber risk mitigation and monitoring with third parties, versus the current self-certification process that is proving less reliable.
Third-party relationships will cease being an afterthought. Security will be built into any product, service, solution or software capability provided by a third party, and will be subject to frequent testing and updates.
2. Rise of the “fusion center.”
Financial services institutions’ search for a holistic, integrated approach to cybersecurity has often proven elusive. Now, firms are building cyber “fusion centers” that better integrate teams focused on fraud, cyber, IT, physical security and product development to boost intelligence, speed response, reduce costs and leverage scarce talent. The result is more efficient and faster threat awareness and mitigation.
3. Defending raw data.
How does a financial services firm protect its most valuable, sensitive and regulated data, and where is it located? In 2015, the discussion will move away from “building bigger walls” to a “defense in depth” risk-based approach around high-risk and high-value repositories that limits the value of raw data, such as debit card PINs.
The use of tokenization, chip cards and other solutions will increasingly render stolen data useless to hackers.
4. New hacker opportunities.
New electronic wireless payment systems are a boon to hackers as they present more targets. In particular, use of underlying technologies like Bluetooth or near-field communications creates opportunities for cyber attacks and breaches.