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Cyber Security Best Practices Financial Institutions Should Follow

Greg Manson

Cybersecurity attacks have become inevitable in today’s world, particularly in the financial industry. Financial institutions, such as wealth management firms, investment brokers, and credit unions are very attractive to cyber-attackers since they host a variety of sensitive data – bank account numbers, social security numbers, etc., but have not been subjected to the same level or security scrutiny as the banks.

An attack on one of these institutions can result in the loss of vital data which can have a devastating effect on the institution’s reputation, costing significant amounts of time and money to repair. Banks may have strict regulations and guidelines regarding security, but not all these institutions fall under the same rules and regulations.

Most security breaches are a result of human error - one of your employees clicks on a bad link in an email or allows an attacker to change your client’s address without proper verification. It’s imperative that all organizations promote cybersecurity awareness and make security best practices mandatory for their employees.

Here are the top ways banks and other financial organizations can remain secure.

  • Keep Up-to-Date with Current Threats – Cybercriminals are becoming more advanced and are good at staying one stop ahead of cybersecurity systems and tools. Today’s cybercriminals are using more advanced techniques to entice their victims to open an email, attachment or link that will download malicious software. Knowing the latest cyberthreats and techniques can keep users from being victimized.
  • Establish a Formal Information Security Program – It’s important to foster a culture of security. Involve people from various departments in your organization to put security efforts in a documented framework. This security program will define what you are trying to protect and how you’re going to do it.
  • Educate Your EmployeesProviding frequent training for employees is essential to your organization’s security posture. The more you educate your employees, the less likely they are to become the victim of a breach or attack. This training should encourage your users to question the security implication of every action and always ask “why they need to know” if someone requests sensitive information.

These are just a few things that every financial institution should be doing to be more secure. If you feel as though your organization is not where it needs to be from a security standpoint, it's time to schedule a call with our experts.