SBP issues guidelines on prevention against cyber attacks
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AMANULLAH KHAN KARACHI—State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has issued guidelines on prevention against cyber attacks. According to a statement of the Central Bank issued on Thursday, through these guidelines, the bank has advised banks/ MFBs/DFIS to continuously improve their cyber security controls and procedures so as to anticipate, withstand, detect, and respond to cyber attacks. The SBP’s cyber security instructions provide guidelines in the areas of risk ownership and management responsibility; periodic evaluation and monitoring of cyber security controls; regular independent assessment and tests, and industry collaboration and contingency planning.
The new instructions required the Board of Directors (BoD) of the institutions to regularly evaluate the adequacy of cyber security systems and action plans with regard to emerging cyber threats. The SBP further said that the senior management was required to ensure that an organizational plan of action for cyber security management exists in each institution and is regularly reviewed and updated for implementation. It may be noted here that cyber threats have become a global phenomenon and are continually growing in sophistication and impact, despite the advances in cyber-security technologies and practices.
The SBP has always proactively strived to provide an enabling regulatory framework in order to cope with new threats. While the new technologies and their application in banking system has created new opportunities for the efficient and cost- effective delivery of services, these have also posed a number of new threats and risks. The Central Bank statement said that the banks/DFIs/MFBs were required to make necessary arrangements to comply with the instructions latest by December 31, 2016.
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