Hybrid IT: a solution to the cyber security offensive?

In 2017, removing risks and maximising security is a major – if not the major – concern for financial organisations, whatever their size.

In the wake of an increasing number of high-profile cyber-attacks, businesses are rightly escalating cyber security to the very top of their priority list.

To help organisations address the growing risks, there is an increasing number of regulatory bodies and – in turn – an increasing level of cyber security regulations and requirements in place.

The emerging regulations are being put in place to mitigate the likelihood of a successful attack hitting an organisation, and to make preventative measures easier and more straightforward for businesses to take.

As in the case of the revised directive for payment services in 2015, though, often the new measures required by regulators appear to favour smaller, disruptive fintech businesses over the larger ‘traditional’ organisations.

For instance, the revised directive, introduced by the European Commission, aimed to provide a level playing field for all payment providers and users, protecting consumer data and introducing a legal framework of technical standards with which all providers must adhere.

For smaller, newer fintech players, the introduction signalled a new opportunity for a fairer, more competitive market and new opportunities for growth.

But for larger organisations weighed down by sometimes decades-old legacy infrastructure systems, making the required changes was a far more challenging task – and this is a common scenario with the introduction of many new pieces of regulation.

Meeting regulation

The good news is that hybrid IT is an effective route to addressing some of these challenges. Let me explain how.

As a rule, the benefits of hybrid IT are realised by delivering IT agility on top of heritage systems – rather than fundamentally changing the systems’ integral architecture.

For financial organisations looking to deploy this kind of solution, this is good news – especially when it comes to changes in compliance and regulatory requirements.

It means that whenever there is a new requirement to record or report on a particular type of transaction, it can be done through a tool or solution sitting outside the heritage application, making the process far more streamlined and straightforward.

Increased security

Furthermore, hybrid IT increases the security of legacy systems.

Some of the biggest recent cyber-attacks have occurred as a result of making legacy systems – with inherent, outdated security weaknesses – available to new external digital channels.

But with modern, built-in security technologies that can rapidly evolve to tackle new online threats, a well-designed hybrid IT environment can remove the need to access vulnerable legacy systems at anything other than via tightly-controlled and audited automated requests.

In the future

Looking to the future, hybrid IT will mean faster industry-wide response to changing risks and – more importantly – improved capabilities to reduce and mitigate against these risks.

If you’re interested in finding out more about how a hybrid solution could help your organisation meet regulation and improve its cybersecurity, visit Hybrid IT web page.

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What could a hybrid IT solution look like when applied within a financial services organisation? Read Ian Bradbury’s other blog post Hybrid IT: improving operational efficiency.

Ian Bradbury

Ian Bradbury

Chief Technology Officer - Financial Services Business Unit at Fujitsu UK& I
Ian Bradbury

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