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Analysts estimate that the current value of global assets under management is about $147 trillion — a number that is expected to grow by nearly 6% per year until 2025. While this growth is exciting news for financial brokers and advisors, it is also an attractive target for cybercriminals. Asset and wealth management companies are among the heaviest targets for cyberattacks today because of their ready access to financial capital and highly sensitive data.
Smaller investment and advisory firms often have fewer resources available to properly secure their digital perimeter. But that doesn’t mean they are any less attractive to cyberattackers than their larger counterparts.
“Corporates and institutions have invested trillions in protecting themselves against cybercriminals,” said Gary Hales, senior vice-president at Apex Group, in an article for Financial Times. “Family offices…sitting on assets just as sizeable, but without the stringent institutional security measures in place…are often perceived as ‘lower hanging fruit’ by hackers.”
Both internal and external cyber threats have been driven by the adoption of remote and hybrid working models. Data breaches, phishing attacks, ransomware and other vulnerabilities can have devastating effects to the business if not proactively addressed. Small financial firms must reinforce their businesses with practices and solutions that can help them comprehensively manage and mitigate cybersecurity incidents.
Financial services are a target for phishing, ransomware and other cyber scams
The question of a cyberattack in wealth management isn’t “if” but “when.” In fact, cyberattacks are 300 times as likely in financial services than in other industries. Cybersecurity threats include ransomware, email phishing campaigns, subversion of software vulnerabilities, data theft, employee errors and more.
A few notable trends:
Malicious insiders are the most expensive category of attack to resolve
Two out of five SMBs have fallen victim to a ransomware attack
Financial organizations are the most common targets of phishing attacks in 2021
Despite these numbers, financial services firms only raised their cybersecurity spending by less than 1% from 2019 to 2020. As these trends continue, it’s more important than ever for financial firms to protect their organization, from all types of cyberattacks, and from the inside of the organization just as strongly as external threats.
Proactively addressing cybersecurity in financial services
Wealth management firms must pay attention to the cybersecurity threats that are affecting the industry. One critical step is to use a cybersecurity compliance automation solution. Financial organizations can get ahead of cyber issues by using a unified platform to monitor and address their cybersecurity risk posture across multiple threat vectors.
Entreda Unify is an easy-to-use dashboard that provides insight into organizations’ vulnerabilities across devices, networks, users and vendors, and helps customers mitigate risk and strengthen areas of need. Our built-in remediation applications include:
Remote desktop: Remotely access any desktop securely
Auto VPN: Securely browse the internet from anywhere
Data leakage monitoring: Monitor data leakage to any USB and cloud drive
Password policy: Enforce password complexity policies on any device
Anti-virus & anti-malware: Actively manage anti-virus status on any device
Device encryption: Actively manage whole disk encryption status on any device
Unify was designed to address the National Institute of Standards and Technology (#NIST) Cybersecurity Framework, with compliance features and reporting that organizations need to fully satisfy their regulatory and security requirements.
Hackers will only get more sophisticated as they find ways to circumvent companies that have unintended cybersecurity gaps. Preparation for these incidents can keep your organization from being a “sitting duck.”