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Cyber criminals continue to develop more advanced attack strategies targeted at financial institutions. While larger banks often have the budget and staff resources to build and manage a multi-layer security architecture, credit unions have only modest resources to invest in security technologies intended to protect them from potential cyber attacks.
As a result, credit unions need to recognize this risk and look for cost effective ways to protect themselves. As MNP outlined in our recent paper
The Race to Get Ahead: Credit Unions Caught in the Crosswinds of Change, risk management is one of the internal pressures credit unions face and decisions need to be made on how to manage these pressures. Cyber attacks are an increasing risk and many institutions may not even be aware a breach has occurred.
“The new world reality is advanced persistent threats or coordinated cybercriminal efforts using highly advanced techniques,” says David Baxter, Financial Services Consulting with MNP. Moreover, credit unions are prime targets because of the high value of the information they hold: thousands of files with personal and financial data.
Members could be subject to theft or identity fraud. The institution could face significant expenses or lawsuits and the brand could be badly damaged.
“Credit unions can safeguard assets and protect members by adopting an enterprise risk management approach,” says Annette Kuckartz, MNP’s National Credit Union Leader.
Information vulnerabilities don’t originate from technology alone, but also from weaknesses in culture, governance, operations and their integration. Addressing cybersecurity requires addressing the full spectrum of risks across the organization and managing the combined impact of those risks. Some key steps you can take:
1. Make board oversight of information security a priority. 2. Build alliances with suppliers and other credit unions. 3. Conduct risk and vulnerability assessments. 4. Establish top-down, organization-wide reporting and communication. 5. Design and implement appropriate policies, procedures and practices. 6. Build awareness and capability.
Ultimately, implementing a proactive enterprise risk management approach to cybersecurity will benefit every credit union by transforming them into a diligent, vigilant and resilient organization.
To find out more about MNP’s services tailored to credit unions, contact one of our leaders below or one of our local Credit Union Specialists at
Annette Kuckartz, CPA, CA National Credit Union Leader T: 1.877.500.0778 E:
Doug Macdonald, MBA, PMP Credit Union Consulting Leader T: 1.877.251.2922 E:
David Baxter, MBA, PMP, CIPM Financial Services Consulting T: 778.374.2162 E:
In today’s competitive market, credit unions need to find ways to distinguish themselves while offering additional value to members. MNP presents a training solution that enables you to strengthen your relationship with existing members, attract new prospects and boost the financial performance of your credit union’s business clients. Our training program consists of sessions, led by experienced MNP advisors, who work closely with you to understand your members’ key business challenges. We can customize the levels of the program, allowing you flexibility to fit your needs and budget.
MNP is already leading business training programs with two of Canada’s largest credit unions; Conexus in Saskatchewan and Meridian in Ontario. Learn more about the training being offered by clicking here.
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