The Cyber Road Ahead: Threats of 2015

currencies-69522_1280It is no secret that cyber crime has significantly increased in scale and sophistication over the last few years. It is also costing businesses large sums of money as well as unpredictable collateral damage.

Here is a summary of some of the top security trends that are most likely to affect the financial services in 2015:

Third-Party Risk

Thanks to the complexity of the financial services industry, the security posture of third parties such as partners and vendors has made its way to the top of the list, with increasing pressure being placed on the financial sector to increase its cyber risk mitigation strategies.

“Fusion Centre”

Although the financial services have long adopted a relatively holistic approach to cyber security, the need to galvanise its centre is being recognised. Clear-cut systems and procedures are being put in place so as to provide a more visible “fusion centre” that can integrate the many different security teams.

Inbuilt Data Protection

The approach to data protection has, until now, often geared more towards building bigger walls and fortresses rather than working from the inside out. In 2015, the discussion will be on how to ensure greater protection from the moment the data is generated. 

Alternative Payment Schemes

Technology has evolved in such a way that enables consumers to select from a wide range of payment options. The result is greater exposure with more targets for hackers to hit. Bluetooth and NFC are of particular interest and will need to be more considered, beyond simple bench testing.

Hacktivism in the Middle East

Cyber activists have, so far, mainly targeted US and European multinationals. However this is set to expand beyond Western borders, with Middle Eastern financial services already finding themselves victim to attacks.

Cyber Crime Hits Developing Countries

It is not just hacktivism that is becoming a worldwide threat. The success of mobile banking in some countries has outgrown local and regional financial organisations’ ability to manage security. Banking malware and phishing attacks are already a continual threat in certain developing countries.

Wargaming is the New Testing Method

The scale and sophistication of cyber crime, combined with the possible outcome has far outgrown the rudimentary security testing methods used by the financial services. It is predicted that the sector will borrow from the military to up its preparation and training for more sinister attacks.

Privacy Has Changed

The new generation of privacy needs to focus on the halo of information surrounding individuals. Transactional, behavioural and navigation information is generated as we move through the online and physical world and yet is not currently regulated. Companies that manage this new information well will gain advantage through customer loyalty and insight.