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Cyber security is among the top threats to the financial industry, as a glance at the news headlines will confirm. Just this week, a large-scale insider trading scheme, replete with a network of international hackers, was brought to justice by federal prosecutors and SEC regulators with a series of arrests and indictments. Called the most sophisticated fraud scheme combining cyber hacking with securities fraud in history, in total 32 rogue traders hackers reaped over $100 million in illegal proceeds in this five-year fraud. The scheme involved thousands of stolen corporate news releases, requested by traders operating out of their homes in suburban America, and illegally obtained by a group of Eastern European hackers. The stolen news reports, which came from sources such as PR Newswire, were then used to trade on news before it was made public. Paul J. Fishman, U.S. Attorney for the District of New Jersey, stated that the wire services were not at fault, and had cooperated completely in the ongoing investigation.


As hacking schemes become increasingly sophisticated, so too does the need for companies to step up their cyber security measures. Companies would do well to proactively employ layered network protection to safeguard both customer and company assets. Solarflare’s President and CEO Russell Stern recently sat down with TabbFORUM to discuss the challenges of protecting sensitive financial data from hackers—a topic that’s increasingly relevant with each emerging headline about this latest hacking ring. Stern shared a 3-step plan for large corporations to safeguard sensitive data through early breach detection and prevention. Check out the full interview here.


3 Steps to Building a More Secure Network:


1. Start at the network server: the network server is the #1 target of all cyber attacks. Your best line of defense against hacking is a strong network server, like Solarflare’s SolarSecure Filter Engine, which utilizes a high performance packet filter to enable “bad” traffic to be detected very early in the network stack, so DDoS attacks can be absorbed without degradation of “good” traffic.

2. Build layered defenses: Combining live threat intelligence with real-time updates provides another strong layer of defense. This approach assumes breaches will happen, but the layers of defense will cause the attack to slow down enough to be detected and corrected. Solarflare’s I/O Adapters are the leader in low latency high frequency server solutions for high performance computing.

3. Close the gap: Future threat mitigation strategies for financial service organizations will continue to fill in the gap between detecting breaches, preventing them, and preventing the exfiltration of sensitive assets from the servers. Firms should use these strategies to help mitigate costs of prevention and shorten the time frame to detection, thereby creating a cost-effective and powerful security solution.


Image via Flickr/Dennis Skley