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January 25, 2017

EU to put banks’ cyber-security to the test

"Banks need to be able to spot, react and defend against a breach quickly"

By Tom Ball

The EU is considering a plan to test banks defences against cyber-attacks. This initiative is similar to a plan already initiated by the Bank of England.

The Bank of England has been focused on this issue since 2013, with as many as thirty out of thirty-five major firms having to undergo a stress test known as CBEST. In November last year, authorities also outlined plans to make firms focus on their own security, by encouraging them to conduct regular security checks themselves. In addition to this, the Bank of England will also carry out spot checks.

Rob Norris, ‎VP Head of Enterprise & Cyber Security EMEIA at Fujitsu said: “The news that the EU is considering cyber stress testing, similar to that of the UK is a wise idea. With the number of threats continuing to increase exponentially, customer trust has never been so valuable or hard to come by and as such it has never been more Cyber shieldimportant for banks to test and ensure they are protected appropriately”.

Banks in particular are making great strides towards a digital future, with other financial services such as Schroders, the asset management firm, transforming in order to succeed in the digital world. However, with this evolution, new challenges arise. There is an indication that the attitude towards cyber-security must fundamentally change and as cyber threats increase, firms must also take a more proactive approach.

“It is paramount that the industry does not overlook or get complacent about security or place it in the “too big to fix” category, and instead takes a proactive approach,” said Norris.

“Banks need to be able to spot, react and defend against a breach quickly, by having a threat monitoring/detection system in place which is where stress testing can play a pivotal role, providing the necessary context to deal with today’s advanced cyber threats. With digital continuing to pave the way in financial services, the industry can no longer afford for it not to be the number one priority.”

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