Since the uprise of cyber-security attacks and threats in the tech world, Bank of England (BOE) highlights that there is a growing risk of cyber-attacks in this sector and many of the banks yet do not have a backup plan for that.
BOE and Financial Conduct Authority gives UK banks and firms a deadline of three months (October 5th) to come up with a detailed plan on how they can avoid cyber-attacks and technical breakdowns and consequently respond to these problems.
This comes after the customers of TSB bank were not able to access their accounts online and transactions. Not only this, but some customers have experienced outages in accessing online banking services for over a month which first initiated in April.
The regulators reinforce this move in response to the potential cyber-attacks and the technical failures occurring in the banks and firms. A two-day outage is a satisfactory limit for a firm or bank as stated in the discussion paper published on Thursday.
Moreover, the BOE and Financial Conduct Authority said that the financial firms and banks should be prepared for potential cyber-attack targets and the disruptions to the key services due to technical breakdowns.
If instance these firms failed to provide a safe backup plan, they would be required to invest in the resiliency of their systems and approve their fixes with the supervisor. These stress tests by BOE will ensure that these firms are prepared with possible attacks or disruptions without prolonged outages.
The regulators highlighted that the resiliency of firms and banks in case of disruptions should agree with the senior management as they would be held responsible for it. A certain time limit for prolonged disruptions will be set by BOE before it causes an effect economically.