Why and how to protect financial institutions from cybercrime?

Financial data is a desirable target for cybercriminals. Hackers often attack financial institutions such as banks, lenders, investment and credit institutions, and brokerage firms. Cases of malicious insiders have also increased.

Security incidents in the financial sector are extremely expensive, second only to the healthcare industry. The average total cost of financial data breaches reached $5.7 million in 2021.

The least that can be done to ensure effective data security in the financial sector is to align the organization with both local and international cybersecurity standards, laws and regulations.

The importance of cyber security cannot be understated

Banks and other institutions in the financial sector must constantly adapt their work processes and security controls to the frequent changes in the field of cyber security. Factors such as the recent pandemic, increased remote work and digitization require a constant review of cyber security methods.

Financial institutions come into contact with highly sensitive data such as personally identifiable information (PII) and financial data of individuals. Cybercriminals can compromise this data by using it to commit financial fraud, steal money, and perform other malicious activities for their own benefit.

According to the 2022 OneSpan Global Financial Regulations Report, more than half of banks consider reducing and preventing cyber-attacks and fraud and protecting sensitive data as one of their biggest challenges.

To ensure that security functions and sensitive data are properly protected, international regulators have established security compliance requirements for financial organizations.

The cyber security requirements of companies in the financial sector help to determine:

1. What should be protected – What pain points to pay attention to when creating an organization’s cyber security strategy

2. How to promote cyber security – What practices and technologies to implement to better protect the organization’s IT infrastructure and data

Each cybersecurity standard, data protection law or regulation sets different requirements and makes different recommendations. That’s why Ekran System has created a guide of seven best practices to cover the most common requirements and help improve your organization’s security.

7 best practices for data protection in the financial sector

There are many solutions that can be used to ensure the security of company data against both internal and external threats. Ekran System, a universal insider risk management platform, offers the following recommendations and IT solutions:

1. Restrict access to critical assets

By reducing the number of people who have access to sensitive information, the risk of a security breach can be significantly reduced. Employees should only be granted access rights that are necessary to perform their duties. Ekran System offers advanced Privileged Access Management (PAM) capabilities that allow you to manage access rights for individual accounts, user roles, and even user groups.

2. Verify the user’s identity

One way to do this is through the use of multi-factor authentication (MFA), which is one of the most important cybersecurity requirements in the financial industry. Ekran System provides two-factor authentication (2FA) to verify the identity of users and also allows distinguishing between users of shared accounts.

3. Create a secure password manager

A dedicated password management solution can also be deployed to automate and optimize password management. Ekran System’s password management feature allows you to create and efficiently manage user credentials in your company, perform automatic password changes for Windows and Active Directory accounts, provide users with one-time passwords, and much more.

4. Continuously monitor user activity

Monitoring user activity plays a vital role in identifying and preventing both internal and external threats to the company. By monitoring user activity, in the event of a cyber security incident, the company has all the evidence of the crime. It is also a core requirement of many cybersecurity regulations. With Ekran System’s user activity monitoring function, it is possible to monitor the activities of all users in your organization and record them in a complete video format.

5. Protect your employee’s personal data

The personally identifiable information (PII) of a company’s employees is protected by many IT security policies. Changing pseudonyms helps protect personally identifiable information from insider threats while allowing data to be anonymized when needed.

Ekran System ensures the privacy of enterprise users by replacing user logins and device names with aliases. This makes it impossible to link the data to a specific user. For example, the user John-Smith appears in activity tracker reports as USR-880B1A instead.

6. Manage third party risks

Third parties are often given more access rights than they need. But mistakes made by third parties can cause anything from a minor service crash to a major data breach. Therefore, financial institutions and banks must closely monitor and manage their third parties. A powerful session monitoring solution for Windows, Linux, and Citrix helps Ekran System monitor the activities of third parties and manage their access to critical data using the PAM capabilities of the platform.

7. Report security incidents in a timely manner

Most bank security compliance requirements require organizations to notify governing bodies and related parties of any data breach. Ekran System’s warning and notification system helps companies proactively identify suspicious events and quickly report these incidents to their security team. In addition, Ekran System automatically analyzes users to detect unusual behavior and inform the company about it in time.

Source: https://www.aripaev.ee/ by www.aripaev.ee.

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