Harmonizing the Power of Data

More leaders seek new way to modernize security and safety effort and adopt an holistic approach

Today, financial institutions across the globe focus on security and safety more than ever before. Known threats, such as workplace violence, terrorism, and natural disasters, continue to be significant challenges, while cybersecurity risks have expanded. These challenges demonstrate that stakes are high, and as the impact on financial services providers increases, the need for real-time, predictive response grows. 

Banks recognize that antiquated approaches to secure their infrastructure, people, and data are no longer ideal. Ever-evolving risks require precise oversight and access to the most critical data at the right time to protect what matters most. Therefore, more leaders seek new ways to modernize security and safety efforts and adopt an holistic approach to realize comprehensive risk management. 

Data Overload
Over the past year, we have seen a sharp uptake in new Internet of Things use cases as banks have accelerated their digital transformation efforts. Although the effects of COVID-19 may have propelled these initiatives, the underlying driver is that stakeholders want access to more of their own data. The ability to transform data into information that can drive intelligent responses is vital and connected.
Smart devices and systems can provide significant benefits to providers of financial services. 

The demand for digital transformation has opened the door to a flurry of incoming data from all IoT devices. Think about all the connected devices that deliver data to your organization. Hundreds if not thousands of systems and solutions are being supported at any given time. Many of these intertwined technologies are part of other business functions, most are part of the security infrastructure in some capacity. Security leaders within the mission-critical financial market need modern ways to capture the information from these investments, correlate it, and then analyze it to make informed decisions. 

The influx of data and networked products brings enhanced capabilities and challenges. It is essential to remember that physical security devices on the network are now potential cybersecurity risks.

Therefore, security needs to be looked at holistically, combining physical and IT security to get the best view of the threat scenario. This correlation must happen across technology systems and between internal departments within banks as well.

In mission-critical environments, an integrated response enables comprehensive management of threats. However, typical security systems operate in silos, making it nearly impossible to achieve intelligence. In these siloed environments, stakeholders must manually coordinate data from multiple systems, which is time-consuming, complex, and often expensive.

Creating a Center of Intelligence
The idea of intelligent security operations are part of the thought process address this challenge. This concept aggregates multiple systems and devices into a single interface and exposes it to an analytic layer. Artificial intelligence and deep learning tools automatically identify the critical data needed to see what is happening across an enterprise and then demonstrate how it affects the business. By unifying information in an automated fashion to protect against and detect risks, there is a more substantial opportunity to realize a predictive threat model.

Collecting intelligence from IoT systems such as video surveillance cameras, building systems, weather sensors, mobile devices and more empowers banks to identify potential anomalies and manage and respond to situations, like a robbery or a fraud attempt, more efficiently. Financial institutions with a single enterprise-wide view across disparate systems and technologies experience new levels of situational awareness, lower operational costs, and increased employee safety. This centralized approach also allows sharing information easily with external agencies, employees, citizens, and first responders — especially valuable when rapid response is paramount.

Additionally, security leaders are empowered to be more efficient, effective, and proactive, all of which are necessary traits in today's fast-paced banking environment. It is more critical than ever for a security leader to implement a coherent and cohesive security plan.

A Smarter Approach to Security
Intelligent security operations have become a top priority for bank security leaders to achieve higher levels of visibility and control, reduce operational costs, and comply with regulations. The concept enables stakeholders to tap into the power of the connected world and promotes collaboration among various stakeholders and departments. It empowers employees within branches and corporate offices to have continuous visibility, detection, response, and incident management. Leaders can take this to another level by merging technologies, best practices, and services to provide an added layer of efficiency to operations.

The landscape of the financial world has changed dramatically over the past three years. We've learned that adaptability is critical, and the ability to embrace change quickly and effectively improves efficiency and operations. Embracing the promise of the Internet of Things will allow you to be better positioned to protect all that matters most and provide much-needed peace of mind as you look to the future.

This article originally appeared in the September / October 2022 issue of Security Today.

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