Open Banking and APIs

U.S. financial services have always used European financial trends as a predictive predecessor on what to expect in the upcoming years, allowing them to prepare for any foreseeable changes. Due to regulatory demands, European countries have been required to shift to an Open Banking Approach. Open Banking is taking over the financial industry by storm as customer demand for convenience and efficiency have skyrocketed.  Open banking, a sub section of the latest FinTech advancements, is when a customer of a Financial Organizations allows a third-party vendor to obtain and/or manage their financial data, per InfoSec. “Open banking is built upon the premise that customers own the data they generate and have the right to direct banks to share their data with others they trust.”, per Deloitte Insights. The way Open Banking works is by utilizing Application Programming Interfaces (API’s), which allow different software to communicate with one another, to transfer data from one place to another. “APIs have been used to connect developers to payment networks as well as display billing details on a bank’s website. Through open banking, APIs are now being used to issue commands to third party providers”, per Business Insider.  

Innovations in banking and financial services are accelerating at an exceptional rate and continue to improve & ease user experience. The use of Application Programming Interfaces is expanding to companies of all vertices and is becoming the norm for transferring data. It is estimated by Akamai, that 83% of all web traffic is API traffic. Open banking and the use of API’s is at the front of the line in this new age of digital transformation and is very exciting for financial services and customers alike. Unfortunately, with every innovative financial solution, comes a brand-new vulnerability point for cyber criminals to exploit. “Today, there’s almost no way to develop a modern application without some sort of API integration, and adversaries are taking note, now setting their sights on this emerging attack frontier.”, per Security Boulevard

The issue that lies with these advancements in digital transformation is the skills gap required to maintain, monitor, and operate financial technologies. FinTech companies create astounding software that eases employee workload and increases customer satisfaction yet, are too complex for financial employees to understand what is actually going on in the back end, putting critical company data at risk on a daily basis. Open Banking strategies utilizing API’s import and export massive amounts of sensitive data and if that data isn’t being monitored continuously there is no way to know who or what is seeing that data. Being able to have full insight and control over a network is essential for Financial Enterprises to establish security, privacy, and control over their data. Gartner predicts that by the end of 2020, 90% of web-applications will be exposed by a weakness withing the API system. 

 In a digital world, breaches are going to happen, but they don’t have to be detrimental. With proper manage, detection, and response processes financial companies can have the best of both worlds. 24/7 proactive threat hunting, automated preventative responses, and real-time alerts   across the entire network enables financial firms to not only gain full visibility and control over their infrastructure, but also stay up to date on the latest & greatest financial technologies. Eliminating the skills gap from FinTech innovations to financial employees while also fortifying your data security and privacy is simply the first step.  

Steel Patriot Partners provides a comprehensive, outsourced, full-scale cybersecurity solution that can be fully implemented, automated, and learning in 1-2 months. Our services allow financial firms to not only create a holistic approach to their data security, but they will also be able to scale to any FinTech innovation.  

If anything in this article struck your attention, please do not hesitate to reach out to us! We are real people, providing real solutions, to a real problem. Cybersecurity is our profession and creating partnerships by way of education and empowerment is our passion. For more information regarding anything cybersecurity and healthcare, simply give us a follow on social media (FacebookTwitterLinkedIn), send us an email, give us a call at 703-297-4405 or contact us directly! Regardless of the method you choose, we look forward to hearing from you and – as always, we appreciate your time for reading this content! Stay blessed and stay secure!