Financial Institutions Learn about Growing Malware Threats at ABA Annual Convention

Thu, 31 Oct 2013 – ABA 2013, New Orleans

Wontok had the opportunity recently to meet with leaders in the banking community as silver sponsor of the American Bankers Association 2013 Annual Convention in New Orleans. The conference presented a great opportunity to showcase and demonstrate our SafeCentral endpoint fraud prevention technology to the financial community. As a sponsor of the event, we also provided umbrellas in the registration bags — which in the city of perpetual rain, were quite useful.

ABA recognizes malware as a key banking threat that needs innovative measures to address it. Wontok was invited to be one of eight companies to present at ABA’s new Innovation Station: Technology Showcase. Senior VP of Product Management, Paul Murray delivered a fast paced seven-minute presentation that outlined the current challenges facing financial institutions and the importance of a multi-layered approach to fighting against account takeover fraud. Wontok presented along with Computer Services, Fiserv, Hearsay Social, Lendio, Linkable Networks, LoanLogics and NCR. Bank Innovation covered the showcase in an article:

“Wontok’s method is smart: Banks have strong security at the center of the transaction, but since it is difficult to determine the status of the endpoint or user’s computer, Wontok’s SafeCentral assumes all users to be affected with malware and operates the bank site security accordingly.”

Check out Wontok’s infographic that summarizes the presentation.

Furthering the security theme at ABA was Richard Clarke, chairman and CEO of Good Harbor and a recognized expert on cybersecurity. His keynote addressed the future challenges of the financial industry calling out four key threat sources: crooks, nation states, hackers and terrorists.  He suggested five things that financial institutions should NOT do when it comes to cyber threats and cybersecurity:

  1. Don’t think it won’t happen to you because it happens to every company. In fact, it probably already happened.
  2. Don’t think that security is a CIO issue alone. The entire company needs to be involved in risk management. Many companies are forming Cyber Committees to improve awareness and education.
  3. Don’t think this is a compliance issue. Being in compliance does not equal “secure”.
  4. Don’t think existing technology is good enough. Firewalls were good in the 1990s, but not now. Advanced Persistent Threats gets around firewalls. If you are depending on 1990s technology, don’t think that is good enough.  Where should you focus?  Spend money on your interior with NEW technology.
  5. Don’t think you have to take it. Don’t just write off the losses.

For more about the impact of APTs on financial institutions, watch our new video by Ken Baylor, research vice president for NSS Labs and a recognized leader in bank security, who agrees that banks need new approaches to these new threats. Visit to watch the three part Online Banking Fraud Viewpoints series.

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