Top Cyber Security Threat for the Banking Industry in 2017

Media Division | April 25, 2017

Unfortunately, there many different types of organizations and industries that tend to be targeted by cyber attackers, but there also tends to be certain ones that are targeted more heavily.  For instance, the healthcare industry continues to receive a large amount of cyber attacks due to the wide array of valuable data and funds that they hold.  Yet another is financial institutions, and the reason for them being heavily targeted can be quite easily guessed – money.  Hackers can achieve some of the greatest illicit gains by targeting financial institutions. And aside from targeting the money directly, they also target the bank customers’ data to either commit fraud or sell the information among the black market for others to use.

Banks face an interesting proposition when it comes to cyber security, being that they not only hold money from the public but also many different businesses.  This puts them in a position of having to have an extremely high level of security standards.  Realistically, banks are critical to societal operations, and a cyber attack on a bank affects much more than just them, as it can affect those whose funds they hold.  They also face a variety of different threats when it comes to cyber security.

Probably one of the largest security threats that banks face is the potential for insider threats.  Insider threats in a bank can come about for a variety of different reasons.  It could be as simple as a disgruntled employee or ex-employee who releases valuable security information which compromises various components.  Another way that insider threats come about is through bribery.  Malicious actors lurking among the dark web will actually offer money to bank employees to give up their login credentials or other security secrets, which allows the actor to access the systems and perform whatever malicious tasks they intend.  Unfortunately, this is a situation where it may not matter whether the person is disgruntled or not.  Many individuals can have financial difficulties, and the offering of a few thousand dollars to give up some information may seem like a godsend for them, as it could help them pay their bills for instance.  This is a more common difficulty for banks which still have many physical locations and employ tellers.  Tellers can have a difficult job; with the high risk of robbery, abrasive customers, and low pay, this could make them easy targets for cyber attackers offering money for information.

Commonality of Insider Banking Threats

This is an issue which banks will need to place much more focus upon within the New Year.  According to a report from PWC in their report Key Findings from The Global State of Information Security Survey 2014 in regard to financial services, insiders were often more likely to be the source of cyber attacks.  And unfortunately, the instances of these types of attacks have continued to increase.  There a variety of implementations that financial institutions can use to help curb these types of threats, including:

  • Managing Appropriate User Access and Credentials
  • Employing Methods of Identifying Account Logins From Other Locations
  • Identifying Concurrent Logins

Employing Cyber Threat Intelligence for Banks

As mentioned above, banks and other financial institutions face a difficult situation when it comes to protecting the data and funds of public and businesses.  They must be able to proactively defend from threats and attackers from all potential vectors.  Being that banks can face quite unique threats designed for them specifically, they must employ security methods that can help defend against these, such as cyber threat intelligence for banks.  Banks must, of course, have basic security implements in place, but they must also be alerted of particular threats to the industry to be able to defend against them before they can attack.  Massive Alliance offers cyber threat intelligence for banks that can help them to prevent malicious actors from being able to breach their networks and systems.

Massive's Media Division publishes timely news and insights based on current events, trends, and actionable cross-industry expertise.