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For the financial services industry, it’s not a matter of if, but when, a large-scale cyber-attack will occur. In fact, nearly one of every four (24%) cyber breaches in 2017 affected a financial services organization, according to the Verizon 2017 Data Breach Investigations Report, making the sector the number one target for cyber-attacks. Perhaps even more troubling is that the rate of successful cyber breaches per firm in the financial services sector alone jumped to 125 in 2017, up from 40 in 2012 - that’s a 200% increase in just five years.

And those breaches are getting more costly. According to Accenture’s 2017 Cost of Cyber Crime Study, the average total cost of a cyber-attack per firm reached nearly $18.3 million, an increase of $7.32 million since 2014.

The complexity of the financial services industry, the interconnectedness of individual players, and the introduction of new and innovative technologies further heighten the risk of a large-scale cyber-attack on the financial sector.

In March, DTCC and Oliver Wyman released a white paper highlighting key initiatives that are essential to mitigating the systemic consequences of a large-scale attack.

Recently, Stephen Scharf, DTCC Chief Security Officer, and David LaFalce, DTCC Executive Director and Global Head Business Continuity & Crisis Management, discussed how the industry can advance those proposals outlined from the paper, taking concepts and making them reality.

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