Cybercrime isn’t anything new, but as more and more of our daily lives and financial transactions are conducted online, fintech is becoming increasingly vital to protect consumers and prevent both businesses and individuals from becoming victims.
Instances of phishing, hacking, SMS fraud, and email fraud where criminals purport to be from the tax authorities, a legitimate bank or another lender have grown substantially, with CMS reporting a 200% increase in cyberattacks between 2019 and 2022.
New Cybercrime legislation is coming into force across the globe and while this introduces new enforcement powers, it is up to fintech providers to stem the flow and use innovation to stop cyber criminals in their tracks.
How Can Fintech Combat Growing Levels of Cybercrime?
Chief Technical Officer Michael Lazarus of Wonga Online (Pty) Ltd, a fintech credit lender based in South Africa, claims that, ‘Companies are responsible, whatever their size, for taking appropriate steps to secure systems, data and infrastructure’.
Some of the innovative solutions already employed by the innovative lender in the financial marketplace include the following:
Continuous Threat Awareness
Cybercriminals choose optimal moments to strike, so having robust authentication policies isn’t enough to prevent thefts and losses. Fintech providers can implement detection techniques that are always on, increasing the verification requirements for any access request to be approved.
Unlike conventional safeguards, zero-trust cyber security operates on the basis that every attempted log-in is potentially fraudulent, bypassing previous weaknesses where a hacker could enter a system with minimal checks by accessing secure details from inside the organisation’s network.
Least-privilege access rules mean that even staff members can only view the information or perform the functions linked to their access permissions without allowing open-blanket policies that create vulnerabilities.
Incident Response Planning
The worst-case scenario is that cybercrime occurs, and nobody notices until it is too late to prevent, retrieve data, or avoid serious losses. Incident response plans include robust operational frameworks that mean companies know what to do immediately when a data breach or attack is detected. Moving quickly can have a significant impact on the extent of a successful breach.
Endpoint Security Patching
Innovation in cybercrime evolves quickly, and banks and businesses need to be just as agile, implementing patches continually as new possible gaps in security provisions emerge. Patching is efficient and immediate, so it can be put in place straight away rather than leaving a vulnerability exposed.
Dark Web Monitoring
Fintech companies have implemented monitoring processes to identify the presence of identifying data related to their company, brand, URL, or executives on the dark web. This can help recognise when a breach is being planned or stop a ransomware attack from developing.
Secure Data Backups
Ransomware attacks are among the most common in the fintech sector, and companies that create comprehensive backups are in a good position to recover quickly. However, backups themselves can be exposed, so secure backups stored with anti-malware protection are ideal.