Cyber Attacks on IFAs up 52%

Published / Last Updated on 31/03/2022

In reply to a Freedom of Information request by Picus Security, the FCA has confirmed that IFAs reported 116 cyber security attacks in 2021 compared to 76 incidents in 2020.  That is a huge increase of 52% in just a year.

We know that across all industries in 2020 and 2021, covid-19 lockdown, remote working, and the use of remote services between consumers and businesses increased and have in fact now become ‘normal’ procedure.  The same can be said of financial advisers and given that the industry with £billions of client investments, it is no surprise that the security of financial advisers is being tested.

65% of last year’s figures were due to cyber attacks and 35% was due to data breaches.  Some also involved ransomware.

The FCA added that financial advisers, as with any other area of finance, have a duty to have systems continually monitored and updated to ensure system stability and client data security.

Comment

We estimate that our own systems are tested several times everyday.  We will not disclose our own security procedures but suffice to say that we have multi-layered security and multiple firewalls before accessing client data.  We also have several other security monitors and auto protect systems to track any suspicious activity and ‘kill it’ early.  That said, if governments, national security agencies, national services and even political leaders’ telephones and computers can be ‘hacked’ then we are under no illusion that any system can be hacked.

We continually review and deploy new developments to protect data as best we can and will continue to do so.

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