Small banks facing heightened cyber risks urge Congress to act

Ransomware and other cyber attacks targeting critical infrastructure are on the rise around the world, and financial institutions are particularly vulnerable. Cyber ​​security firm Trend Micro recently reported that ransomware attacks against the banking industry rose 1,318% in the first half of 2021 compared to the first half of 2020.

“Tech companies, financial institutions and many other businesses are collecting and storing more consumer data than ever before,” Representative Ed Perlmutter, D-Colo., Chair of the consumer protection panel, said at the hearing last week. “Cyber ​​security issues and consumer data rights are intertwined, making cybersecurity essential for all financial institutions large and small. “

Complicated jurisdictions

Regulation and supervision of financial institutions is divided among several agencies, including the Federal Reserve, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and the National Credit Union Administration, said Jeffrey Newgard, president and CEO. from the Bank of Idaho. .

“Unfortunately, these disparate agencies are not adequately coordinating their data security efforts,” Newgard told lawmakers. He testified on behalf of the Independent Community Bankers of America.

Financial institutions and banks, for example, are governed by the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act and are required to protect their customer data and comply with data security standards.

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Joan Ferguson

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