NEW YORK (MainStreet) Financial institutions are facing persistent threats from cyber attacks -- it's a "new normal" for the industry, according to Booz Allen, the management consulting firm based in McLean, Va. The firm has released a report detailing the top cyber security trends challenging the financial industry in the coming year, warning the biggest threats may be to smaller, regional banks.
The report claims attackers are now moving from large-size banks to regional and mid-tier financial institutions due to their lack of security.
"Unlike their larger cousins, mid-tier and regional banks, wealth management organizations, hedge funds, etc., often lack the financial, technology and manpower to introduce widespread cyber security protections," a Booz Allen statement released with the report says. "When grouped together, these organizations are like a row of dominos that, when attacked, can create a cascade of systemic risks that could impact banks of any size."
Mobile platforms are also seeing an increase in new threats, including the Perkele Trojan and other cross-platform malware that exploit weaknesses in mobile device security. Booz Allen says that although Perkele has not yet spread globally, it is expected to grow rapidly beyond its point of origin in the Middle East during the holiday season, as consumers make more online purchases.
The report says that as operational data is moved to the cloud, enhanced security controls are necessary to ensure that banks not only avoid sharing sensitive data but also defend against "adversaries moving laterally across their data sets."