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The key to fighting Cyber Crime

Cyber Risk has been a key part of the agenda for some time now with ever present and evolving threats but the highly publicised Presidential Election scandal and the start of Cryptocurrency breaches has seen its magnitude reach new heights.

Modern day bank robberies don’t happen with guns and getaway cars anymore, they happen in someone’s basement on a computer. The potential damage is widespread and the task of catching the perpetrators is complex. It’s not just money at stake (whether it be cash or crypto), it is people’s identities – and right to make an informed decision without the influence of ‘fake news’ it would seem.

No-one is safe from cyber-crime; the government with threats to national security, healthcare and their protection of sensitive data, car manufactures ensuring the driverless cars of the future can’t be taken over to the man on the street having his Bluetooth targeted or bank card read. Cyber-crime is real, multifaceted, widespread and not going away and financial services near the top of the list of those who carry the huge responsibility of being able to defend against an attack.

When even the supposedly ultra-secure blockchain is breached it highlights how serious and present cyber crime is. $731 million worth of crytpocurrency has been stolen so far this year, three times the amount stolen last year already. The biggest proportion of this was $500 million hacked from Coincheck in Japan. The reason cited by their CEO – not enough talent and experience with in their security team.

People are the most important part of fighting against cyber crime. The most talented people are needed to be able to strategise, identify issues and build out teams to address it. We’re seeing this increase in demand more than ever. It’s not only the inception of cyber risk teams and divisions within an organisation but specialist practices within consultancies. We are placing people with backgrounds in intelligence and technology who understand how a business works. They not only need to be able to mitigate current risks but keep one step ahead of emerging threats.

A recent example is our placement of Kyle Hastings at strategic advisor and consulting partner to the world’s leading financial institutions, Parker Fitzgerald. With over 20 years experience in key roles across major financial services firms, Kyle has joined the team as Practice Leader, Cyber Risk. He will be responsible for bringing together over 100 cyber security, risk management and data privacy specialists to ‘shape their strategic response to the emerging threat landscape and new global regulatory standards’.

Scott Vincent, CEO of Parker Fitzgerald said, “Kyle joins Parker Fitzgerald at an important juncture for the business and the wider industry. The digitisation of financial services means the sector is balancing the needs of embracing a sustainable digital business model as well as addressing the growing regulatory requirements and broader cyber threats to their businesses and customers. Kyle’s expertise will be vital as we continue to support our clients and grow the business.”

We agree that the pressure is only set to rise, not only as the hackers’ abilities evolve but with further regulation. The FCA has announced that it is working with the Bank of England and the UK Treasury and will unveil guidelines on crytocurrency policy later this year.

This much needed regulation will establish industry standards and companies will have the added necessity of ensuring they have the most effective policies and procedures in place to keep their stakeholders safe. It is likely to have global repercussions and we hope that the regulatory standards will promote the most robust line of defence against the increasingly frequent and sophisticated attacks and the number of successful security breaches will decline. Knowing the quality of the people we have placed in key positions and organisations we feel very positive about their ability to achieve this.

If you would like to strengthen your Cyber Crime team we’d love to help.