Financial Services

Earning Client Loyalty

Today financial institutions compete in a crowded marketplace. Regulations, index driven margins, and a similar range of products and services places significant emphasis on the customer experience. The cornerstone of customer loyalty hinges on the institution's public reputation and trust established with each interaction.

For a financial institution to remain competitive it is essential they demonstrate sound corporate governance, constant vigilance in protecting the integrity of the institution, and ensure the protection of each customer's sensitive information and assets. This is an arduous task for even the most sophisticated institutions when you consider the behavior of both malicious insiders and well-funded external bad actors.

The security challenge is increasingly complex, compounded by customer driven demands such as high-speed connectivity and zero down time service level agreements (SLAs). The dizzying array of platforms & layers of abstraction provide anonymity, making it difficult to clearly verify identifies of 'friends' or 'foes' that are often obscured by a complex fabric of virtual machines, smart devices, and dynamic connections that may or may not be secure.

The Threat to Brand and Institutional Trust

Perhaps the single most significant risk to an institution's reputation and financial assets is the successful execution and public disclosure of any cyber attack. The potential monetary gain, not to mention the loss of customer and market confidence associated with compromising the networks of banks, brokerage firms and insurance companies make them a principal target for cybercriminals, organized crime, and state sponsored bad actors.

Customers and shareholders alike demonstrate their support or negative perception with their wallets and patronage. Many will abandon an institution because personally identifiable information (PII) that could lead to identity theft has been compromised. Competitive advantage is lost when a disgruntled company insider reveals disappointing news prior to an "official" announcement or sensitive data is exfiltrated through thoughtfully designed security architecture to a dangerous third party.

Constant Challenges & Business Realities

All of these risks demand financial services institutions remain ever vigilant in their ongoing battle to protect customers and maintain confidence in the global financial services infrastructure from the fallout of cyber attacks that dominate the headlines almost daily. The sophistication, successful execution, and sheer number of attacks demonstrate the ability of cyber criminals to find and exploit vulnerabilities, damage customer trust, and steal financial assets.

At the same time, in order to conduct business in today's fast paced, global financial marketplace, these institutions have no choice but to constantly move huge amounts of critically sensitive data across networks they don't completely control. Yet security managers have no way of knowing with absolute certainty that their company's data is safe from customized spear phishing attacks, quickly propagating worms, Advanced Persistent Threats (APT) or other destructive malicious code.

Many organizations are not adequately equipped with sufficient network security firepower to stay ahead of emerging threats and sophisticated attacks designed to avoid traditional detection techniques, leaving even the best-defended networks vulnerable.

Maintaining Regulatory & Industry Compliance

Adding complexity to operating these high-speed, low latency network architectures is the need to demonstrate compliance with a constantly evolving array of government and industry regulations. Implementing information security safeguards and deploying policy enforcement technologies to keep up with the demands of regulations such as the Gramm Leach Bliley Act (GLBA), the Sarbanes-Oxley act (SOX), Senate bill 1350, HIPAA, the Payment Card Industry (PCI) and now PCI 2.0 requires continuous monitoring of insider activity. When these controls fail, financial institutions have the additional burden of determining how many customers have been impacted. They must determine and follow proper protocols to remain in compliance with public notification requirements that vary by state or municipality.

To minimize the impact of potentially malicious breaches in security, IT teams at financial institutions must have the capability to accurately analyze large amounts of data or network traffic, identify suspicious activity and respond swiftly. Current security countermeasures and approaches may address one or more aspects of these challenges, but are limited in scope.  Moving forward, it will be critical for financial services firms to a migrate to a technology that can provide multidimensional views into all of these threat areas and treat them as a single security challenge.

Coming Soon: A Versatile Solution You Can Count On

But that will be changing soon. ISC8 technology will level the playing field It will provide your security team the visibility and context to confidently secure your network, make fast, intelligent response decisions that maintain brand equity, market confidence and customer trust.