When asked why he robbed banks, Depression-era stickup artist Willie Sutton is said to have replied: “Because that’s where the money is.”
In the Digital Age, banks and other financial institutions continue to face some of the highest risk factors of any industry – now in the form of rootkits, ransomware, theft of credentials and other attacks. It’s more than just a financial services challenge: security breaches across all industries, from manufacturing to healthcare have grown dramatically in frequency and impact: the average cost per breach in 2013 was estimated at U.S. $3.5 million.
The risks to financial services organizations are formidable enough within the data center infrastructure, but they are especially prolific and growing at the end points. Device end users include financial services professionals who often switch between multiple mobile and desktop devices during their business day. They need to run demanding apps for amortization, trading, analytics and much more, with moment-to-moment access to act on data in real time. These users can also include customers who access their accounts online to check balances, arrange transactions, and connect with their financial service advisors.
To address potential vulnerabilities, financial services organizations must be constantly vigilant and committed to hardening their defenses to counter the security threats out there, all while evolving and improving the customer experience.
The Case for Windows 10 on Intel® Architecture
To answer the need for managing access by so many different end-user devices, Windows 10 features a core OS across a range of form factors for a seamless user experience regardless of which device they’re using – great for enhanced productivity and customer satisfaction.
With the release of Windows 10 coinciding with the latest generation of Intel® Core™ vPro™ processors, IT professionals in financial services organizations are presented with an opportunity to strengthen their defenses through such capabilities as pervasive encryption, biometric authentication and other hardware-enhanced security technologies. For example, the Windows Hello feature replaces passwords with biometrics built into the operating system (OS). Another technology, UEFI Secure Boot, protects against malware that interferes with the boot process.
It’s important to note: as significant an improvement as Windows 10 alone offers, the full security benefits are enabled only when paired with elements of the latest Intel® technology. Those include a modern processor platform that delivers optimum computing performance, encryptable solid-state drives and biometric framework enhancement.
Windows 10 has already proven itself in the marketplace: recently, Windows 10 observed a major anniversary release and now has 4 million assets running globally. And, with an aggressive feedback mechanism in place, Windows 10 will continue to improve constantly.
Yesterday’s Defenses Won’t Stop Tomorrow’s Threats
As long as the Willie Suttons of the Digital Age continue to target banks, investment firms, wealth managers and other financial services entities, IT professionals must continually change up their defenses. These include migrating to the latest operating systems, adopting new delivery models such as “Windows as a Service” and providing new ways to manage the OS platform.
Think beyond a mere system refresh: consider all key elements as you create the most appropriate approach for evolving your infrastructure to anticipate new security threats before they happen, securing IT for financial professionals and customers alike.