Data security can include the addition of digital privacy measures that can prevent unauthorised access to websites, databases and computers. This is a global problem, with hackers corrupting data and causing major security risks.

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Protection

How do we protect ourselves from the daily threat of cyber attacks? Any business in possession of critical documentation is at risk of becoming a target for online fraud as the number of cyber attack cases aimed at hacking confidential information is at an all-time high. With an increased number of security breaches in the investment industry, financial advisors are questioning whether they are doing everything they can to protect their firms from risk. Many advisors are re-assessing their procedures and internal systems and making changes where necessary.

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User awareness training courses are being implemented that arm advisors with their firm’s cybersecurity program and let them know what policies and procedures are currently in place, what their risks are and how to mitigate them.

Awareness

Financial advisors need to make themselves aware of their Corporate Governance, Enterprise Risk Management and Corporate Compliance to ensure the protection of clients’ personal information. Make sure your anti-virus software is up to date and set your computer to automatically lock users out after a period of inactivity.

Encryption

Encryption is a sure defence against hackers as encrypting files helps protect them should physical security measures fail. Encryption is used to protect data in transit, for example, via networks. In addition, data should be encrypted when it’s transmitted across networks to prevent unauthorised users listening in to network traffic.

Back office systems for IFAs https://www.intelliflo.com/ are used widely in the investment industry, with many platforms and applications that don’t interface with customers but help with the backbone of administrative work.

Financial advisors are educating their employees about dealing with the threat of a cybersecurity. Help has come from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), who have initiated a series of spot-check exams that some advisory firms must take. The results will show how well-prepared these firms are if an attack happens.

Compliance officials are assessing the efficacy of cybersecurity programmes, putting the necessary protocols in place to root out and respond to any new cyber threats.

Don’t cut corners. Clean up your system and don’t allow hackers to get in through the back door.