Cybercrime has been on a consistent rise over the past decade and in very recent years it has become a top priority for financial institutions. This is now becoming a concern for Credit Union, as in the past Credit Unions may have been too small and would not have considered themselves targets, this has now drastically changed, now small institutions are considered to be quick and easy targets. Cybercriminals will actively test systems to identify weaknesses.
Credit Unions now must consider, “what is the potential harm of a cyber-attack/ breach?”
- Damage to property / earnings
- Damage to reputation / trust
- Damage to customers
- Legal issues
- Contractual breach or tortious liability – damages
- Legislative / regulatory breach – costs and fines
Considering that banks are the largest competitors for Credit Unions, the loss of sensitive data from a cyber breach could result in a serious decrease in consumer confidence, which can be financially detrimental and would see members migrate to banks.
“Financial institutions can easily fall into the trap that ‘compliance is security’ and nothing is further from the truth,” Stu Sjouwerman, founder/CEO of the Clearwater, Fl.-based KnowBe4.
“You shouldn’t worry about if your credit union will be hacked, but when. Take the needed steps to protect your organization and maintain members’ trust. Here are some good places to start:
- Invest appropriately in staffing, education, and training. Hire the right people to deal with your information security and technology and ensure staff have the information and tools they need to avoid becoming part of your cyber problems.
- Have dedicated information security staff. Information security is a critical responsibility and needs to be prioritized. “