The Fight against Financial Cyber Crime

The financial services industry is a lucrative target and is disproportionately affected by the rise of cyber crime. Let’s discuss its prevention measures.

Financial cyber crime is an act in which financial gains or profits are made through criminal activities such as identity fraud, ransomware attacks, e-mail, and Internet fraud. Attempts to steal financial accounts, credit cards, and other payment card information also comes under cyber crime.

Financial cyber crime affects companies of all sizes and sectors, as well as individuals, and can have devastating consequences. To avoid falling victim to financial cyber crime, one needs to understand how the technology responds to the decisions someone makes, says Adrian Constantin Stanila, Head of the Visma Cyber Security Incident Response Team.   

At the same time, it is a fact that financial institutions will always suffer from cyber attacks – sometimes because of vulnerabilities and some due to insider greed. But, the victim will remain unsuspecting customers.

A lot of times, people investing their hard-earned money in trading are scammed and lose out on their money because of fraud and cyber crimes. The best way to avoid it is to make sure that one does all transactions with a reputable broker. The financial services industry is a lucrative target and is disproportionately affected by the rise of cyber crime.

How Banks are detecting and preventing it from happening

Given the complexity of financial services, detecting and preventing fraud in the financial sector is an insurmountable challenge. Many facets of financial cyberattacks have been revealed over the years. Most banks have started their journey towards a single operating model for financial crime, fraud, and cybersecurity by integrating their cybersecurity and fraud units.

As banks plan their journeys towards a unified operating model for financial crime, fraud, and cybersecurity, they delve deep into issues of process, people, organization, data, technology, and governance.

By integrating approaches in these three areas, operations are consolidated into a single framework with shared assets and systems that can be used throughout the company for risk management. Since the majority of banks are working to stop fraud and financial crime by exchanging information, coordinating, and collaborating, with this step greater risk-taking and efficiency can be achieved.

Shared data in this way allows institutions to detect fraud, offer personalized advice to clients, and identify the accumulation of systemic risks. The aggregation of customer information is done in close cooperation with financial crime, fraud, and cybersecurity groups, thereby strengthening an institution’s analytical and detection capabilities. The integration of the anti-fraud potential of automation and analysis of bank data is realized.

Fraud detection is a top priority for financial service institutions 

To identify bad actors, financial services institutions (FSIs) must use access to more comprehensive information and data to detect and prevent cyber crime. Data is a critical factor in threat detection systems, and FSIS needs the right infrastructure to crack real-time data to detect risks. This requires new methods of structuring and analyzing data to scale it in real-time without compromising the user experience of legitimate customers.

To ensure compliance, Financial service institutions (FSIs) must consider measures that include the introduction of risk-based detection systems with Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning, the creation of knowledge charts, and the use of consent-based data from its sector.

Financial institutions should also consider the obligation to report any suspicion of money laundering, including successful fraud. The basis of a successful fight against fraud is the culture of the institution.

Awareness due to FATF fraud prevention guidelines

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has issued standards to prevent the misuse of virtual assets for money laundering and terrorist financing. This means that virtual asset providers must adopt the same risk-based approach to combating money laundering and terrorist financing as financial institutions.

Senior money laundering managers at banks, brokerages, and other financial service providers must have a sound understanding of their companies’ cybersecurity systems and be responsible for the resources and knowledge of responsible experts.

In the face of increasing cyber attacks, financial institutions must work to integrate departments of compliance, information management, and information security (IM / IT).

Banks, financial institutions, and other obliged entities must comply with judicial AML/CFT rules such as the US Bank Secrecy Act (BSA), the UK Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA), and the EU Money Laundering Directive (AMLD).

The biggest update to the financial integrity system of the country since 2001 came in the United States with the Anti-Money Laundering Act (AMLA), which was added to the National Defense Authorization Act for the 2021 fiscal year. The MLA requires US companies to register information about their beneficial shareholders in a new register available to law enforcement – a historic step forward for US financial integrity.


Many new tools available to us support the measures taken in response to fraud, cyber-attacks, and other financial crimes. The Microsoft Cloud Platform Azure, for example, enables recording, matching, profiling of customer transactions, and other advanced data to support accurate and rapid crime detection.

Law enforcement agencies nowadays can exchange information from the Small Business Administration to individual large and small banks to other government agencies to see indicators of fraud, attack vectors, where fraud occurs, who commits fraud, and how we can be effective investigative and law enforcement agencies. Our institutions can avoid fraud in most cases if we leverage the modern technology available to us.

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