Security risks curb the adoption of online banking

By Neil Martin, Marketing Manager at Panda Security

While the days of the average person being distrustful of carrying out any kind of financial transaction online are long gone, there are still certain obstacles to overcome, despite ecommerce and online business continuing to grow.

Digital transactions have become more sophisticated, more secure, but one kind of digital transaction is lagging behind: online banking.

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And cyber criminals are aware of this fact.

 More than three quarters of companies (78%) were targets of payment fraud in 2017 – the highest percentage recorded since 2007.

According to the Payments Fraud and Control Survey Report carried out by JP Morgan Chase, a leading global financial services firm, 78% of companies were targets of payment fraud in 2017.

The report is based on a survey of corporate practitioners in all kinds of companies in the US and highlights the growing threat of financial cybercrime across the globe.

Since 2014, there has been an uptick in payment fraud activity, with a steep increase in 2015 – and with 78% of companies experiencing attempted or actual payment fraud in 2017, it marks the highest percentage since 2007. 

Neil Martin
Neil Martin

Almost half of the survey respondents (45%) worry about cyber security

Almost half of the corporate practitioners surveyed (45%) are concerned about how cyberattacks could affect online banking operations or B2B payments. Not at all surprising.

In fact, this is the main reason that this type of platform isn’t growing as fast as could be expected. 

More than three quarters of survey respondents (77%) are victims of Business Email Compromise (BEC) scams

Though we could talk about unjustified technophobia from these professionals, the truth is that most of them have certain grounds to be mistrustful. 77% of those surveyed have been victims of the notorious BEC scam or CEO fraud, an illegal practice where an employee with access to the company’s funds receives an email from a director, asking for an urgent transfer. This is a fraud, since the sender of the email is someone external to the company; but by the time the employee realizes, it’ll be too late. This practice is as illegal as it is successful. In fact, BEC scams became the most lucrative cybercrime of 2017. 

Treasury and finance professionals need all the tools and information available to outsmart fraudsters

Those surveyed are in no doubt: while they would like to make greater use of online banking services and B2B platforms, they are concerned about the cybersecurity of their finances and of the payments carried out in this way. 

The key: cybersecurity policies and solutions

Companies cannot remain idle with regards to this problem, nor simply hope that it will eventually sort itself out.  As such, financial institutions and online transaction platforms must guarantee potential customers the confidence they need to increase the adoption of their services.

To do this, they must bolster their companies’ corporate cybersecurity, especially in three main areas:

  1. Strategy

Companies need to position corporate cybersecurity as one of their central strategic pillars. It’s not enough for IT security to be a necessary supplement: it must be integrated into the essential points of their business model.

  1. Policy

Corporations must also establish cybersecurity policies. As well as affecting the technical operation of the company, these policies also need to reach the employees themselves, making sure they’re aware of how important it is to ensure that the company’s security is never compromised.

  1. Solutions

Finally, every company, independent of its sector or even its size, must adopt and implement cybersecurity solutions to improve the reliability of its system. To do so, they may turn to external specialized cybersecurity companies that know how to establish security measures to stop all sorts of problems for occurring.

The fact is that these days, thanks to a collective effort, the average user now trusts online platforms for their financial transactions. So now the ball is in the companies’ court: they must protect user trust by providing secure, cyberattack-proof IT systems. Banks and financial institutions must be the first to ensure financial cybersecurity in all their operations.

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