The Bankwatch

Tracking the consumer evolution of financial services

Implications of internet giants network concerns for banks

This announcement from Yahoo may sound innocuous but it has implications for the downrange targets of this blog, banks. 

Our Commitment to Protecting Your Information | Yahoo.com

Today we are announcing that we will extend that effort across all Yahoo products. More specifically this means we will:

  • Encrypt all information that moves between our data centers by the end of Q1 2014;
  • Offer users an option to encrypt all data flow to/from Yahoo by the end of Q1 2014;
  • Work closely with our international Mail partners to ensure that Yahoo co-branded Mail accounts are https-enabled.

Relevance to Bankwatch:

Banks are nowhere as complex as the Yahoos, Googles and Microsofts inasmuch as Banks typically have one or two datacenters, including backups.  However banks have a host of legacy systems alongside new systems, and internal data traffic is significant.  I recall 10 years ago discussing the concerns of system architects at the bank, and one significant one was the encryption of traffic between systems. 

Bank security is based on the Hadrians wall approach by not letting anyone in.  This approach begets the question that when anyone gets in, their access is unfettered.  This is truly the Trojan Horse concern.  Once access is gained, then the battle is lost, so maximum defence on the outer wall is prime priority.  The corollary is that the Hadrians Wall defence will present uncomfortable restrictions on customer access.

I wonder how much most banks have gone down the road of encrypting data between their disparate systems that are within their network but are very different from each other.

Written by Colin Henderson

November 18, 2013 at 23:07

Posted in Uncategorized

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