Banks & Cyber-security: Challenges & Considerations

With easy access to new technologies, customer expectations are increasing as well as changing, day by day. To meet the varying customer needs, banks have to keep up with the times and adopt technological upgradation from time to time. Change is always followed by challenges, and it is these challenges that the banks need to overcome, in terms of security and implementation.

Global Trends in Cyber-Security

With technological advancements, there has been a considerable shift in the way customers deal with their banking transactions. The most eminent would be the rapid increase in the usage of digital channels such as internet banking, e-wallets, mobile banking and ATMs.

Banks & Cyber-security Challenges & Considerations

This has resulted in increased exposure to cyber attacks, which can lead to sizeable financial and reputational losses. The impact is compounded when the bank loses customer confidence. Hence the key influencers, which make it imperative for banks to invest in cybersecurity are:

  • Increase in financial data losses including card data, personal information etc.
  • Unauthorized access to bank’s network and systems

Challenges Faced In Banking Cybersecurity:

The push towards a cashless economy has magnified the need to strengthen cybersecurity, especially when it comes to digital banking products. Few of the major challenges faced by banks are:

  • Compliance with regulations

Managing and adhering to the regulatory compliance has become extremely challenging for the banks. The volume of regulations has increased dramatically over the past few years and it is not just the larger banks, but also the smaller banks that are required to fulfill the regulatory obligations.

  • Securing customer data

Customer privacy violation can take place in many ways; stolen card data, leakage of personal data due to improper security measures, unauthorized data sharing by third parties

  • Cyber Threat

With the growth of technology, cyber attacks also took new shapes in the form of next-generation ransomware, web attacks etc.

  • Third party risks

Third party institutions need to report to the bank in case of any critical/suspicious issues/threats to the card data environment.

Various banks have adopted different measures to fight the cybersecurity issue. The best example could be that of Vijaya Bank which has won a total of 9 Skoch Awards which included IT Security award and an award for e-Surveillance of ATMs and branches.

Though each bank thinks distinctively on adopting various options it is imperative to assume that the theme remains the same for various banking channels.

Security considerations for Cyber-Security in the banks:

  • Internet Banking

Security measures like multi-factor authentication, strong passwords, image authentication, etc. can be considered.

  • Mobile Banking

It should be ensured that mobile applications are up to date and should be tested. Latest hardening standards could be implemented.

  • Online Wallet

Awareness on Phishing, Malware attacks, social engineering, Password security etc. should be created among the users.

  • ATM Security

Along with PIN, security measures like the biometric scan of eye-retina, voice scan or fingerprint scan should be introduced by Banks.

  • UPI (Unified Payment Interface)

Banks should come up with security strategies, predictive controls to build a secure UPI environment so that the user is not compromised with the user experience and security risks.

As an ongoing process, banks must conduct regular drills, do awareness programs and practice simulation exercises to keep their infrastructure and the entire banking environment secured. Going forward, banks need to consider technological advancements like the Internet of Things, Near Field of Communication (NFC), Unmanned aerial systems, wearable devices etc.

Banks can also consider machine learning, cognitive technologies in the banking sector. Advancements in automation can drive new standards and achievement but would require strong governance and control mechanisms.

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2 Replies to “Banks & Cyber-security: Challenges & Considerations”

  1. Robert

    The increase in the number of data breach incidence in the banking and insurance sectors leads to the high adoption of BFSI Security solutions.

  2. Praesepe

    Stumble upon your posts on Fossbytes that lead me to Goodreads reviews of your 1st book.
    Your book will definitely astonish someone greatly. You gain my admiration since I’m struggling to write between loads of caffeine.
    Have a great day!


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