Britain's banks told to draw up cyber-attack plans

Britain's banks told to draw up cyber-attack plans

Britain's financial institutions must put concrete plans in place over the next few months to deal with the growing threat of cyber-attacks, the Bank of England has warned.

Minutes of last month's BofE Financial Policy Committee meeting reveal concerns that, with the cyber-threat growing, the financial system has "a number of potential vulnerabilities, reflecting its high degree of interconnectedness, its reliance on centralised market infrastructure, and its sometimes complex legacy IT systems".

The Treasury is already working to assess, test and improve the UK's financial system's resilience to cyber-attacks, developing general guidance on best practice for banks.

The FPC has backed the "direction of travel" but says that the next step is for regulators to make sure that banks have concrete plans in place. Action plans should be ready by the first quarter of 2014, with progress report by the end of this year. The Bank of England will also "be reviewing its own resilience".

Last month a top US banking regulator warned that more legislation may be needed in the fight against an ever-growing cyber-security threat which has seen bank Web sites come under repeated DDoS attacks in recent months.

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