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Mike Doman
Technology Journalist

Mike Doman is a technology, lifestyle, industrial and education writer

Mike Doman
Technology Journalist

Mike Doman is a technology, lifestyle, industrial and education writer

When it comes to the finance industry, protecting data isn’t optional – but many businesses aren’t prepared for the risk.

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Data is becoming an increasingly abundant commodity. Figures in the most recent Ericsson Mobility Report show that data volumes – particularly on mobile devices – are predicted to grow significantly in the next five years, with data usage on smartphones expected to grow tenfold, while tablets are expected to see an increase of 12 times.

When it comes to the finance industry, of paramount importance is the ability to protect this information, but a recent report by Telstra and discussed at the recent Technology and Finance Industry Forum showed that many businesses aren’t prepared for the risks that are associated with a digital economy that’s growing at such a rapid rate.

“You cannot manage what you don’t understand,” says General Manager for Security Consulting at Telstra, Guillaume Noé.

“So [for small businesses] it is really about providing a lot of emphasis on identifying the cyber-security risks that are applicable to the financial organisation or financial services industry.

“There is that is no such thing as a static risk assessment. If you do a risk assessment, in two days time it could be completely different, potentially.

”The key challenge raised at the conference is that there’s a disconnect between what IT sees and controls and what they don’t. Which, given that the nature of many security threats is internal - either through human error opening emails or internal breaches – is a concern.

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What are the consequences?

For businesses who ignore threats as they are, the presentations at the event identified reputational loss the most significant consequence, followed by productivity and financial losses. In this context, the importance of having a security strategy is paramount – and one that’s reviewed regularly.

The importance of constant reviewing came through strongly - the security landscape is evolving with technologies and new ways to consume information, meaning traditional ‘static’ security no longer works.

“Compared to two years ago or five years ago, [small businesses need] to increase the frequency of when they do check ups from a security point of view, because the threat landscape is changing so fast,” says Guillaume.

And according to Guillaume, the solution lies in scalable services like Telstra Managed services such as Telstra Cloud.

“Telstra can provide expert cyber security staff augmentations for clients, whether it is one day per month, whether it is one week per month – we are here to assist our clients.

“If you are a mid-sized financial organisation that wants to compete with the big financial organisations … [you need] to recruit and maintain the best available cyber security specialists, who can help you better manage your risks."

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