The Case for Increased Systems Monitoring in Banking

by Edward O'Brien 0

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Standard Bank could be losing as much as R605 000 an hour as a result of the ‘denial of service’ that its internet banking customers have been subjected to, possibly for more than 12 hours, due to its website and app being down.

According to Peter Armstrong, head of cyber strategy for Willis Group Holdings, the average cost of ‘denial of service’ interruptions is $48 000 (R605 000) an hour. The average system downtime is six to 24 hours, said Armstrong at the recent Insurance Conference for the short-term industry.

This is assuming that the Standard Bank website is down because of a distributed denial of service attack (DDoS). A DDoS is “a malicious attempt to make a server or a network resource unavailable to users, usually by temporarily interrupting or suspending the services of a host connected to the Internet”, according to cloud-based application delivery platform, Incapsula. Incapsula estimates that DDoS costs an average $40,000 an hour.

Recent Mercator Advisory Group research on various banking channels systems, including ATMs, branch, and mobile banking systems shows an increased interest – and need – for systems monitoring and management systems. These capabilities go beyond traditional condition monitoring systems, which often focus on system health and potential downtime, and increasingly include application performance monitoring and threat monitoring and management solutions. And while fraudsters will continue to find ways to compromise banking systems, having such pro-active, defensive solutions can help to reduce the number and severity of attacks.

Overview by Ed O’Brien, Director, Banking Channels Advisory Service at Mercator Advisory Group.

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