Investment Association targets cyber security action for asset managers

IA establishes cyber security committee to improve collaboration efforts with UK asset management industry.

 The UK’s Investment Association (IA) has established a cyber security committee to enhance awareness and proactive approaches to the increasing threat of cyber-attacks.

The committee will work with firms, regulators and public authorities to develop industry guidance in the face of increasingly sophisticated cyber security attacks on financial firms.

In a jointly-written report with consultancy KPMG, the IA has called on senior management at asset management firms to increase collaboration across the industry and invest in developing a cyber response framework allowing firms to rapidly detect, respond and recover from potential attacks.

“The asset management sector is prioritising cyber defence, mitigation and resilience to develop a corporate culture that embraces cyber security at its heart,” said Chris Cummings, CEO of the IA.

“Technology is transforming our industry at a speed and scale never seen before, with criminals also becoming more creative in how they attack financial systems. Cyber security issues are not going away and businesses need to understand, manage and mitigate potential cyber security risks.”

Matthew Martindale, partner and investment management cyber security lead at KPMG UK, said that while establishing a single point of contact at board level is a good first step for firms, the problem is an ongoing one and can be rooted outside of technology.

“Staff need to be educated; ask yourself whether your staff at all levels know how to identify and react to a phishing email? The adage that an organisation is only as good as its people is especially true with cyber security where the actions of one individual can have enormous ramifications,” Martindale said.