Symantec Corp. (Nasdaq: SYMC), the global leader in information security, today announced its participation in the Financial Services Technology Consortium (FSTC) Counter-Phishing Initiative.
The FSTC Counter-Phishing Initiative is an industry-level project to address the problem of phishing in financial services as it affects the relationship between customer and firm.
The growing prevalence of phishing attacks creates a serious threat to banks and other financial businesses. Phishing uses email, pop-ups, and fraudulent Web sites to dupe recipients into disclosing personal financial data such as bank account numbers, PINs, passwords, and more. While this correspondence appears to come from a trusted source, it actually originates from a fraudulent one and can lead to identity theft and fraud. Consumers are very concerned about online fraud, according to a survey by InsightExpress, and approximately 32 percent of the survey's respondents said they no longer use the Internet for online banking as a result.
"Phishing is a significant concern for financial institutions, putting their operations and reputations at risk while threatening to damage consumer confidence in conducting business online," said Kim Legelis, director of Symantec Industry Solutions. "By participating in the FSTC Counter-Phishing Initiative, Symantec is demonstrating its commitment to finding solutions to thwart phishing and, in turn, help financial institutions maintain their brand equity and ensure business continuity."
"The goal of the FSTC Counter-Phishing Initiative is to build a portfolio of prospective solutions against financial institution criteria and requirements that are appropriate for financial institutions, are progressive, and which combine techniques and attack the problem of phishing systematically," said Zachary Tumin, executive director of FSTC. "We are pleased that Symantec Corp. will participate in this critical project, and we consider their contribution as an industry leader and trusted name in information security a clear advantage in enabling FSTC to identify technologies to defend against phishing attacks."
Formed in 1993, FSTC is a consortium of leading North American-based financial institutions, technology vendors, independent research organizations, and government agencies. It brings forward, tests, proves, and validates the next generation of critical financial services technologies.
In collaboration with other industry groups the multi-phase FSTC Counter-Phishing Initiative focuses on defining the unique technical and operating requirements of financial institutions (FIs) for counter-phishing measures; investigating counter-phishing technical solutions, proving and piloting solution sets enabled by technology to determine their fit against FI criteria and requirements; and clarifying the infrastructure fit, requirements, and impact of these technologies when deployed in concert with customer education, enforcement, and other industry initiatives.
Earlier this month, Symantec also announced its membership in the Anti-Phishing Working Group, an industry association committed to eliminating phishing scams. In addition, Symantec is a member of the National Cyber Security Alliance, which educates home users, children, and small businesses about computer security best practices to protect against Internet threats such as phishing.