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Financial services wary of growing cyber attacks

Simon Quicke

The financial services (FS) sector is a key target for cyber criminals with more attacks being made against that vertical market than any other.

Although the sector has long been a target for hackers because of the money that could be accessed and has taken necessary steps to protect data there are concerns about the growing level of attacks.

According to PwC's Global Crime Survey half of those financial services specialists quizzed revealed they thought the risks of cybercrime had increased in the last year.

The trend to offer more flexible ways of banking, including apps for mobile devices, was seen as adding to the risk factors.

"The rise in cybercrime is not so surprising given the sector holds large volumes of the type of data cybercriminals are interested in and there is an established underground economy servicing the needs of the market for stolen and compromised data. However, our survey shows cybercrime accounts for a much greater proportion of economic crime in the FS sector than in other industries," said Andrew Clark, forensic services partner, PwC.

"Cybercrime puts the FS sector's customers, brand and reputation at significant risk. Regulators are increasingly viewing cybercrime as a key area of focus and financial institutions are expected to have appropriate systems and controls in place to fight this growing threat," he added.

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