The Biggest Cybersecurity Threats to Banking Institutions

In today’s banking market, information moves at the speed of light. Customers have more power and demand than ever, and financial institutions are having to find ways to offer a better, more user-friendly experience. But even though technology has stepped in to assist with this, it has also opened the doors to potential risks and threats against consumers and their sensitive data.

For example, in the summer of 2017, it was reported that Equifax had been the victim of a massive data breach, affecting more than 143 million Americans alone. Cybersecurity is of the utmost importance and financial institutions have to do their best to protect the sensitive financial data they oversee and it is their duty to be aware of some of the more daunting risks. Here are some risks to look out for:

Unencrypted Data

This is a crucial element of cybersecurity. All data that’s stored on computers within a bank and online should be encrypted, which is a general rule of thumb. Even in the event of information being stolen by hackers, it cannot be used immediately if it’s encrypted. However, if it’s left unencrypted, hackers can use the data instantly, creating serious issues for your financial institution and your customer base.


Computers and cell phones are the platforms of choice for banking customers today. And with the way things are going, mobile apps will be the first choice for customers on the go. With this trend rising, banks have to be aware of malware attacks that can affect everyone. Each time someone connects with your bank’s network, malware is a risk that is posed. Sensitive data passes through this connection and if the end user device, such as a computer or phone, has malware installed on it, that malware could spread throughout your bank’s network.

Third Party Services

It’s not uncommon for banks and financial institutions to employee third party services from other vendors to create a more customer-friendly experience. However, if those third party vendors don’t have a solid cybersecurity plan on their end, your bank could be the one that suffers. Be sure to look into how you can protect against cyber security threats imposed by third parties.

Manipulated Data

Compromised data isn’t always data that has been stolen–it can also be changed. This type of attack can be difficult to uncover immediately and can cause financial institutions to take on millions of dollars in damages. This kind of threat doesn’t necessarily look any more different than unaltered data and can be challenging to spot what has and hasn’t been changed if your bank has been attacked in this way.

Insuring Your Bank

It’s important to have an insurance plan in place to protect against the fallout from all of these threats. While it’s of course extremely vital in every sense of the idea to protect a financial institution against attacks with updated software and cybersecurity education, it’s just as important to protect against risks with a built-in insurance safeguard like a Bankers Insurance program that specifically includes Cyber Liability coverage.


About Financial Guaranty Insurance Brokers

Since 1983, Financial Guaranty Insurance Brokers has distinguished itself as a provider of Professional Liability, Cyber Liability, and Crime insurance products for entities of all types. To receive timely, personalized service from a knowledgeable and experienced staff, call us today at (626) 793-3330 to speak with one of our professionals.