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Understanding Cyber Risk

July 07, 2016
Industry Blogs | 2 minute read

Understanding cyber risk is key to improving cyber security

Today, everything is online. All of a credit union’s information – and that of its clients – is available at the push of a button. But information meant for designated employees is also accessible (illegally) to a sufficiently clever or tenacious black-hat hacker. With the right software and know-how, an online criminal can reach into an organization’s databases and pluck out the sort of personal and financial information that can harm individuals and businesses alike.

To give credit unions an edge in preparing for these kinds of invasions of privacy, the ProSight team has created a basic rundown of cyber risks that credit unions face, and the new approaches that cyber security professional must take to mitigate those risks.

Risking business: the perils of cyber risk

Put simply, cyber risk is the chance that financial information may be lost, disrupted, or damaged by a security or data breach. Such a transgression could do serious harm to a financial institution like a credit union, which is expected to keep its clients’ investments safe and secure. Breaches and data loss erode trust and can have lasting consequences. And if an institution has poor data-protection protocols, members will question the security of their money and their privacy.

Previous approaches to cyber risk have focused on prevention, but as software and techniques improve on both the white-hat and black-hat side of internet security (think “good guys” and “bad guys”), risk-management best practices have switched to rapid detection and response. Unfortunately, institutions have had trouble keeping up with and responding to all incidents quickly. Organizations seeking to mitigate cyber risk in a rapidly advancing technocratic world should focus first and foremost on improving these areas. As any ProSight insurance specialist will tell you, the first step to mitigating risk is to anticipate problem areas and plan accordingly.

For more information about ProSight Specialty Insurance’s programs for credit unions, please contact