Bank of England worried about cyber-threats

Market crashes in China and Greek political uncertainty loomed over the financial world this summer. Now as it begins to look more stable, the Bank of England (BOE) worries about finance risks more than ever with cyber-security the number two worry for bankers.

Concerns were released in the BOE's Financial Stability Report following the October TalkTalk breach that cost the company millions of pounds. T

The BOE asked senior financial executives what worried them to most. While the biggest risk was a downturn in the global economy, 46 percent of finance firms are worried about cyber-risks, which is up from 30 percent for the first half of 2015 and 10 percent for the latter half of 2014. One third of respondents brought up concerns about China and EMEs, and about 25 percent are concerned about the risk of UK downturn.

The central bank is pushing lenders to protect themselves better since cyber-attacks on financial firms can be costly and dangerous. “Cyber-attack is a serious and growing threat to the resilience of the UK financial system—cyber-attacks have the potential to threaten the vital services that the financial system provides to the real economy,” a BOE statement said.

Mark Carney, governor of the BOE, said “elevated” international security risks, in the aftermath of the terror attacks in Paris contributed to a situation that isn't improving in the Middle East,  and had to be taken into account when evaluating cyber-security in the UK.

“There are state actors and there are other non-state actors with a geopolitical bent that can come through cyber and that work on resilience is ongoing,” said Carney. “In that environment we need to build resilience. Our overall message is we have built resilience, without question.”

The BOE stated, “UK and international authorities have already taken action with regard to cyber-risk. The Financial Policy Committee will receive a report on a work programme implemented by UK authorities by summer 2016.”

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