back to article SEC warns cybersecurity is biggest threat to financial system

The chair of the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Mary Jo White, has warned that the biggest risk the financial system faces is cybersecurity. Speaking at the Financial Regulation Summit in Washington DC, White warned the industry that their policies and procedures were not up to scratch and without them they faced …

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SEC also warns water is wet

Financial business continue to ignore warning and complain about their colds and pneumonia, attempt too pass laws against tides.

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WTF?

Losing the plot

It might be the biggest risk faced by individual banks, but "the biggest risk the financial system faces"? WTF! That would be greedy bankers, and the ever widening-gulf between the rich and the poor.

If a bank crashes that doesn't bring the whole system down. It is a bit like saying that the biggest risk faced by civilization is heart disease because the biggest individual mortality risk is heart disease.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: SEC also warns water is wet

The biggest threat to the financial system is private money in politics and lobbying, which allows too big to fail and too big to jail.

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Re: Losing the plot

That would be greedy bankers, and the ever widening-gulf between the rich and the poor.

Deplorable as both of those factors are, the financial system (that is, some form of capitalism with various financial markets) has weathered worse in both categories. They're a long way yet from being a threat to the financial system.

Don't confuse dangers of the financial system with dangers to it. Those are very different categories. Capitalism is hegemonic, and hegemonic power systems are very resilient.

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About fucking time

No, your idea to "revolutionise the way we do X" is not worth $1billion.

That's for 3 reasons.

1) Your idea is based on a load of flashy crap that doesn't actually accomplish anything functional

2) You don't understand the meaning of the word revolutionise, it does not mean the same thing as "iterate"/"improve" or "repeat"

3) Sigh. You don't understand what I've already said, and are still reading in the belief that I am wrong

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CyberSecurity is a door

If people get through that door, their actions can debase currencies (punishable by death in days gone by). Have the Financial Institutions protected themselves from HyperInflation scenarios?

Q1: How many zeroes can the major financial centres around the world cope with?

Q2: How many times per day can a currency be recomputed?

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Er - remind me...

... is 'strong encryption' a Very Good Thing(tm) or a Very Bad Thing(tm) this week? According to the authorities, I mean.

Sigh. I know. Yes. Or, um, no. At the same time. Er - can I sigh again?

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Re: Er - remind me...

It's Wednesday... so it's Very Good Thing (tm). Tomorrow, probably a Very Bad Thing (tm). I think the powers are working on an hourly scenario to be released next week.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Er - remind me...

It's a very good thing if you're a large Corp that can afford to lobby and higher political hacks. It's a very bad if you're a "private" citizen. Jeese, I thought that was obvious. Why do we Plebeians struggle against our Patrician corporatist overloads when what they want should be so obviously good for us? We need to give our Patrician corporatist overloads free reign in ruling us so that we can sleep better during our tightly scheduled sleep shifts and the reduced dietary intake will move us from soft, lumpy and weak to thin, hard machines. See, way better :P

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Mushroom

It's patently obvious what the biggest threat to the financial system is.

It's patently obvious what the biggest threat to the financial system really is and that would be Microsoft Windows. The reason no one can say this is political influence in Washington.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: It's patently obvious what the biggest threat to the financial system is.

Or actually corrupt most bankers.

Special attention seems like it should be reserved for HSBC, which looks to have its fingers in every corruption deal globally.

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If you store things of value...

...in the form of ones and zeroes, then of course maintaining the confidentiality, integrity and availability of those ones and zeroes is important.

Of course the inevitable "Won't someone think of the children" and "But terrorists!" cries degrade the steps taken to protect the ones and zeroes. The strong cryptography push/pull pointed out by a fellow poster is a great example of this. We have to be able to look at encrypted e-mail because terrorists will kill us all in our beds if we don't, but at the same time we need to have secure banking transactions.

The fundamental failure of Government and others in power to understand the basic tenets of the technology that underpins everyday life both amazes and terrifies me. I cannot even pinpoint where the failure starts.

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Re: If you store things of value...

The fundamental failure of Government and others in power to understand the basic tenets of the technology that underpins everyday life both amazes and terrifies me. I cannot even pinpoint where the failure starts.

The failure starts with those voting and those elected. We, the electorate, expect our elected officials to have knowledge or to get in touch with those who do have the knowledge. Once upon a time, we also expected our elected officials to be intelligent, able to compromise, and not be the followers of the party line. That's changed. Part of it is myth about the officials knowing, intelligence, etc. The rest, we voters have bought into.

From there, it's a trail of tears to where we are now.

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Re: If you store things of value...

They're stuck in the "lock it behind sturdy vault doors and regulate tightly access to explosives that can be used to build shaped charges that could cut through that (while keeping some of those handy for our use)" mindset.

They know they want and need encryption but since there's no such thing as a shaped charge or a thermal lance against properly hard crypto, they insist they want a copy of the actual key to every single vault door. Or a smaller, regular front door right next to the giant armoured one for their exclusive use - they'll never give anyone the key to that, scout's honour, and definitely nobody else will try to break _that_ down instead of the main one...! (and this post just lit up a bunch of filters somewhere like a Christmas tree...)

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WTF?

Sorry??

SEC warns cybersecurity is biggest threat to financial system

How does that work? Isn't that like saying safety is the biggest threat?

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Re: Sorry??

From the article, it probably should have been "lack of or incorrect cybersecurity"..... But then again... this is government so who knows. <shrugs> Not I.

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The #1 threat??!!

I actually would put the rise of high frequency and algo trading a bigger threat to finance markets, the repeal of Glass-Steagal much greater than that, the shift from resource based economics to fiat currency far greater than that, and the massive concentration of wealth that has taken place since King Ronald as the largest threat.

Cybersecurity does make a handy boogieman to scare to plebes while not upsetting the status quo, though

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Re: The #1 threat??!!

Some have argued the biggest threat to the finance markets is the financial industry itself with its very complex, opaque derivatives.

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Re: The #1 threat??!!

That's such a spot-on comment, I tried to give you more up votes, but was thwarted by "the man."

Dearest El Reg,

I found a bug in the comment system where I am unable to award 100 up votes to a single commentator. Low priority fix. More FYI. Thanks, and keep up the good work!

-Noisy IT Guy

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self harm?

"Some have argued the biggest threat to the finance markets is the financial industry itself with its very complex, opaque derivatives."

No, that's not a thread as history has shown that in those cases the financial industry will be bailed out promptly and very little harm will come to those in charge.

If they would see "cyber attacks" as a threat, they would "invest" in security. They would ban office software, they would compartmentalize systems. They would try to be less evil so they could hire competent programmers more easily.

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#1 threat to financial system

Funny I thought the #1 threat is heading towards having a national debt as large as the entire world's GDP. Bah that house of cards is so big it will never fall.

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Re: #1 threat to financial system

Well at least we don't have any unfunded/underfunded liabilities in regards to the enormous Baby Boomer generation about to retire. Think happy thoughts.

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Transcript

"Blah, blah, blah,blah, cybersecurity blah, blah, blah.

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Mary Jo and the SEC just don't get IT yet, do they? And never will whilst they server fools' tools

The chair of the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Mary Jo White, has warned that the biggest risk the financial system faces is cybersecurity.

To think other than freely shared advanced intelligence is the greatest asset the financial system can purchase to save itself from itself, is the height of ignorant and arrogance manifested in a ponzi market virtual reality mediascape, and the biggest risk the financial system faces too.

And aint that the gospel, in all of ITs simply complex glory.

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Ponzi Casino Rules for Crazy Market Conditions

Here be one of those unicorns the SEC never sees, and the system loves to believe can do magic rather than be a leading front for fraud and daylight robbery ........ http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-05-18/elizabeth-holmes-admits-theranos-technolgy-fraud-restates-voids-years-test-results

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The biggest threat

Wouldn't that be the elephant in the room, the US national debt? Once it brings the dollar crashing down, the while world will pay for the American lifestyle.

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The biggest threats are pirates at play in your midst cooking books in stock fantasy markets

For those who want to see an enlightening pictorial of what the US national debt looks like, and to ponder the possibility of it ever starting to be repaid rather than foreclosed on and written off as a fundamental program disastrously flawed and abusively taken cynical advantage of, for both private and personal and public inequitable gain ....... https://youtu.be/jKpVlDSIz9o

And whenever you know that your systems leaderships know full well the state of that kind of globalised play, what does that tell of their fitness of purpose to be lead in other than a criminal enterprise at odds to the greater public good. By their inactions are they branded complicit and accessories to surely at least a treasonous skullduggery before, during and after the fact ?

And, upon further consideration and reflection on the above, are pirates at play in their midsts cooking books in stock fantasy markets, most probably an ever greater threat that cannot be defeated by status quo forces and established systems of command and control.

Universal Virtual Forces with Immaculately Resourced Assets are Rooting and Routing for the Future in the Sublime Internetional Networking of Things. I Kid U Not. Be Prepared for the New Kids in Fresh HyperRadioProActive Fields of Plenty rather than Scared by the Old Boys doing All Manner of Vital and Viral Things their Inimical Way.

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Yup. Once phone operating systems accepted the 'store once, use everywhere' data model without policing what data apps could access, Hell was open for business.

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