Digital experts have warned that hackers could increasingly target financial advice firms now retail banks are splurging on cyber security to protect customers’ cash.
Cyber security has become a hot topic in recent months, with the government launching the National Cyber Security Centre to address weaknesses in the IT systems of financial firms, particularly big players such as banks.
In February, Lloyds joined forces with the likes of Barclays and Santander to share information about cyber threats, just weeks before the banking giant became a victim of an attack which caused a temporary collapse of its digital services.
Edward Parsons, head of cyber defence at digital security firm MWR InfoSecurity, said retail banks have traditionally been the main target for hackers.
However, he said there is a possibility that improvements made to the digital security of retail banks could displace a lot of crime activity and push it into other financial services sectors, such as financial advice and wealth management.
“The major risk from a financial adviser point of view is you are trusted with customer data that includes personal financial information, which is central to your business.
“An attacker might steal that information and either directly monetise it by selling it to a disreputable broker, or monetise it themselves by targeting clients.” Source FT