Cash Crisis: How the Financial Services Sector Can Crush its Compliance Challenge


Posted on: March 16, 2016 by Olaf Badstubner

The Financial Services (FS) industry is under pressure like never before. With increasingly close scrutiny from regulators, as well as being continually bombarded by all manner of cyber security threats – from DDoS attacks to data breaches –the sector must make a change, or could quickly become overwhelmed.

Like a knight in shining armour, in rides the new digital era; supposedly here to save the day and offer a new approach in tackling some of the latest challenges faced by FS organisations.

Historically, when it comes to cyber security the banking sector has been among the pioneers in setting up advanced protection. But the battle between the sword and the shield never ends, and as digitization progresses we are seeing new threats continuously emerge.

Getting Ahead of the Threat

The more you digitize – whether with digital customer channels, or high frequency trading software – the more likely you are to find breaches. While working with one large bank we discovered 17 rogue mobile banking applications that were operating on several legitimate app stores. Disguised as official banking apps for that institution, they aimed to lure customers and seize control of their personal data and accounts.

Fortunately, these kinds of threats can be detected fairly easily. However, the frequency at which they appear, across all touchpoints, means that being proactive is all the more necessary.

In a world that is changing fast, it's essential to evolve from a purely reactive approach to a predictive and pre-emptive one. Our recent whitepaper on new cyber security trends talks through the need for a dynamic security model.

When it comes to regulations, the challenge is even greater. The FS sector was among the first to have taken the ‘digital-first’ approach and while this has offered a number of critical benefits, these are often held in departmental silos. However, with global regulation compliance now requiring a holistic view across all departments this must change.

A Single View

Unifying systems is crucial. With an instant, real-time view of your data, compliance becomes a lesser challenge. Without having to wait weeks to collect, aggregate and reconcile data you can make predictive simulations, immediately taking preventative measures before a problem arises.

Additionally, a unified system will also help increase operational productivity. One such example would be in the ability to correlate data from previously siloed systems: if you’re able to get one view of a single customer’s status in both Investment and Credit then it becomes much easier to prevent digital fraud or financial crime.

Responding to the needs of the market, Atos has partnered with a number of technology providers to offer customers the solutions needed to stay both secure and compliant. Earlier last year Atos joined forces with Digital Guardian to launch the new cloud-based Data Loss Prevention Service. The solution helps prevent data loss, whether it be from unauthorized insider activity or external threats including advanced malware.

The fight for digital fraud prevention, compliance management, and financial crime management is a long one. But it is very much worthwhile. Given the importance of the data stored within financial institutions, this is a topic that cannot be taken lightly.

To find out more about the threats facing the Financial Services Industry check out my previous blog post. In my next post I will be discussing the future of the FS sector, looking at some of the most disruptive trends we can expect to see over the coming years.

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About Olaf Badstubner

Global Director Financial Services and member of the Scientific Community
As Global Director Financial Services at Atos, Olaf is heading the strategic go-to-market of Risk, Compliance and Regulatory Reporting. He is a deeply accomplished and agile market strategy & business development executive with strong international management experience and a proven track record in banking for almost 20 years. Prior to Atos he served as Director at Siemens with responsibility of financial services clients. He also served as Management Consultant at Siemens with strong focus on banks. Olaf is a graduated engineer (Dipl.-Ing.) in Information Technology of Ilmenau University of Technology and started his career at a German bank in 1996

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