RBS share drop accelerates on stress test flop

Stressed. Shares in Royal Bank of Scotland have accelerated their losses this morning, falling over 4.5 per cent after the state-backed lender came in bottom of the heap in the Bank of England’s latest stress tests. RBS failed the toughest ever stress tests carried out by the BoE, with results this morning showing the lender’s […]

Continue Reading


Renminbi strengthens further despite gains by dollar

The renminbi on track for a fourth day of firming against the dollar on Wednesday after China’s central bank once again pushed the currency’s trading band (marginally) stronger. The onshore exchange rate (CNY) for the reniminbi was 0.28 per cent stronger at Rmb6.8855 in afternoon trade, bringing it 0.53 per cent firmer since it last […]

Continue Reading


Sales in Rocket Internet’s portfolio companies rise 30%

Revenues at Rocket Internet rose strongly at its portfolio companies in the first nine months of the year as the German tech group said it was making strides on the “path towards profitability”. Sales at its main companies increased 30.6 per cent to €1.58bn while losses narrowed. Rocket said the adjusted margin for earnings before […]

Continue Reading


Spanish construction rebuilds after market collapse

Property developer Olivier Crambade founded Therus Invest in Madrid in 2004 to build offices and retail space. For five years business went quite well, and Therus developed and sold more than €300m of properties. Then Spain’s economy imploded, taking property with it, and Mr Crambade spent six years tending to Dhamma Energy, a solar energy […]

Continue Reading


Nomura rounds up markets’ biggest misses in 2016

Forecasting markets a year in advance is never easy, but with “year-ahead investment themes” season well underway, Nomura has provided a handy reminder of quite how difficult it is, with an overview of markets’ biggest hits and misses (OK, mostly misses) from the start of 2016. The biggest miss among analysts, according to Nomura’s Sam […]

Continue Reading

Categorized | Banks, Financial

UK finance groups face cyber attack surge

Posted on September 21, 2016

A man types on a computer keyboard in Warsaw in this February 28, 2013 illustration file picture. One of the largest ever cyber attacks is slowing global internet services after an organisation blocking "spam" content became a target, with some experts saying the disruption could get worse. To match INTERNET-ATTACK/ REUTERS/Kacper Pempel/Files (POLAND - Tags: BUSINESS SCIENCE TECHNOLOGY) - RTXXZVX©Reuters

The number of cyber attacks against financial services groups has soared in the past couple of years, with 75 attacks being reported to the City watchdog this year, compared with just five in all of 2014.

The 1,400 per cent leap in just two years, revealed by a senior official at the UK Financial Conduct Authority on Wednesday, underscores the size of the threat that the financial sector and its regulators are grappling with, particularly after high-profile attacks on the central bank of Bangladesh and related payment-system hacks, among others this year.

    “We know from firms’ reports to us that attacks are on the increase year-on-year — in 2014, we received five reports, in 2015, 27, and 75 so far in 2016. Whilst this significant increase indicates more attacks are occurring, this may also suggest better detection and great reporting to us on the part of the firms,” said Nausicaa Delfas, the FCA’s director of specialist supervision, at the FT’s Cyber Security Summit.

    The FCA’s statistics tally with others that describe a sharp increase in cyber attacks. PwC has previously reported that there had been a 45 per cent increase in the volume of attacks by organised criminal gangs.

    The FCA is stepping up its scrutiny of financial services’ defences against hacks beyond the large banks that have been subject to penetration testing overseen by the Bank of England, which the central bank has described as “close to mandatory”.

    Large lenders have already been put on notice that if their defences are weak, they could be forced to set aside more capital to cover the additional risk.

    The FCA is now turning its attention to a wider group of companies, no matter their size. All companies are obliged to inform the regulator about any known hacks and are expected to be able to identify them in a timely manner.

    “The reality is that even the smallest firm holds large quantities of sensitive data which, if compromised, could then have a ripple effect to other areas of the financial sector and, indeed, businesses more broadly,” Ms Delfas said.

    Special Report

    Cyber attack survival guide

    A close-up on an abstract design of a display, which is warning about a cyber attack

    What to expect, who to tell and how to limit the damage

    She predicted that the City would have to contend with increasing ransomware attacks — where malware installed on a system, normally through a bogus email, locks out users from accessing information, holding it to ransom — forecasting that these attacks will “significantly increase” over the next few years. Such attacks rose 35 per cent last year, according to Symantec.

    Ms Delfas also warned companies about outsourcing and storing data with cloud providers, warning that they “cannot outsource the associated responsibility for the risks”.

    You need JavaScript active on your browser in order to see this video.

    No video