Cybersecurity in the Finance Sector

Cybersecurity in the Finance Sector

Aug 01, 2021 / Kron

The finance sector frequently faces cyber security threats and, as a result, suffers from major problems unless the necessary data security measures are taken. The cyber threats to finance intend to cause data breaches. One of the main problems encountered is the identity theft faced by the employees and customers of an institution targeted by the cyber attacker.

On the other hand, potential data leakage in the finance sector force companies to grapple with significant financial losses. Consequently, this creates an inevitable situation in which people lose trust in the company and its brand image is damaged. The factors that make the finance sector attractive for cyber attackers and pave the way for the aforementioned damages are directly related to the nature of the sector.

Why is the Finance Sector an Attractive Target?

As a result of digital transformation's significant impact on the finance sector in particular, hackers have become more interested in the sector than ever. According to the study titled Cost of a Data Breach Report prepared by IBM Security, a data breach in the finance sector, which is a high-profile target for those who seek to carry out a cyber attack, has a lifecycle of 233 days.

In the finance sector, between 4600 and 4900 data breach incidents occurred each year since 2013. The reason why the sector is threatened can be explained under a few topics. First of all, we should mention unauthorized account transfers and identity theft. Cyber attackers can easily overcome ill-structured access security layers using unauthorized transfers and access customer accounts to empty the vault within minutes. Also, phishing attacks can cause inevitable damage to companies in terms of both corporate image and legal obligations.

Furthermore, the fines and judicial penalties imposed by states for failure to adequately protect personal data is one of the main reasons why companies should take cyber security seriously. Likewise, the reason the attack surface increases and leaves financial institutions vulnerable to cyber threats is that financial institutions offer website and mobile app services simultaneously to increase user accessibility. As the chance for hackers to find more attack points increases, it is necessary for you to smoothly manage the access process related to authorized accounts in order to prevent sensitive data leakage.

In short, the finance sector is a favorite among attackers because it promises great wealth in terms of money and private data. Also, the fact that the companies that follow the footsteps of the digital age provide fully online services make them significantly easier targets. The finance sector mostly deals with ransomware attacks, bot attacks and phishing attacks, which is a result of social engineering.

Protection of Critical Data and Corporate Assets

The 2021 Data Breach Investigations Report prepared by Verizon shows that in the finance sector, which incorporates rich resources in terms of critical data and corporate assets, 55% of the breaches results from incorrect distribution.

In banking, which is an important branch of the finance sector, the personal data that organizations are required to protect are subject to certain regulations. Such data is protected by the GDPR and PDPL in Turkey and there are other types of protection for different scopes on the international level:

  • ISO/IEC 27001: Also known as the Information Security Management, the ISO/IEC 27001 can be referred to as a part of a broad cyber security measures protocol. The regulation contains the necessary recommendations and procedures required to minimize the security risks in the finance sector.
  • Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX): SOX was developed to prevent manipulation and aims to protect investors by supporting the accuracy and reliability of corporate statements.
  • PCI-DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard): The PCI-DSS increases the control of cardholders' data to prevent data breach attempts made through credit cards and intends to prevent financial losses.
  • GDPR/PDPL: As it has a wide field of application, GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) offers a broader area of authorization. Therefore, every company that operates by processing personal data within the boundaries of the European Union is subject to the GDPR. The PDPL (Personal Data Protection Law) refers to all the rules that are required to be observed by natural persons and legal entities who collect, process and store personal data in Turkey.

Privileged Access Management (PAM)

PAM (Privileged Access Management), ensures high-level access security by inspecting all accesses related to authorized accounts and authorized sessions. PAM offers effective protection for companies in the finance sector and limits the movement of a cyber attacker even if he manages to enter the company network. The access of the cyber attacker to critical systems is thus significantly reduced.

The various modules of PAM also guarantee data security for your company by controlling the access of authorized accounts with their enhanced features. The function of each module is detailed below:

  • Privileged Session Manager: This module authorizes all the sessions within the company network at various levels and sets a barrier against potential confusion and manipulation attempts regarding access management.
  • Dynamic Password Controller: This module allows for authenticating the authorized sessions within the system. Dynamic Password Controller offers an end-to-end encrypted infrastructure and its password vault feature securely stores the passwords of authorized accounts as isolated from the general network.
  • Two-Factor Authentication (2FA): Two-Factor Authentication can simultaneously perform time-based and location-based authentication. It can thus create two different authentication inputs when a privileged access permission is requested from the system.
  • Database Access Manager: This module inspects the activities of the system administrators on the network and allows for monitoring the privileged access from the top to the bottom of the hierarchical system.
  • Data Masking: Dynamic Data Masking supervises and controls every single action the database managers perform on the network. The system can be tracked in real time with its feature that records operations while masking them at the same time.

Our PAM solution Single Connect provides the most powerful ways to allay the cyber security concerns of organizations in the finance sector.

By the way, Single Connect once again proved to be among the world's leading PAM solutions by being included in the 2021 Magic Quadrant for PAM report prepared by Gartner and succeeded to be included in the report for two consecutive years thanks to its Scalability, Database Control features and advanced Session Management capabilities. Single Connect is ready to meet the data security needs of the finance sector with its advanced modules and end-to-end privileged access management applications.

Please feel free to contact us for further details on Single Connect and to ask anything to our expert team.

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