Oversight of FI cybersecurity, threat info sharing remain top challenges for regulators, IGs council reports

A council of federal financial regulatory inspectors general created in the aftermath of the financial crisis identifies seven “top management and performance challenges” facing their respective regulatory organizations – including ongoing challenges related to cyber threats, according to the group’s second annual report, released Wednesday.

The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (Dodd-Frank) established the Council of Inspectors General on Financial Oversight (CIGFO) to oversee the Financial Stability Oversight Council (FSOC) and suggest measures to improve financial oversight. (The FSOC’s main focus is on emerging threats to U.S. financial stability.) In this year’s report, the IGs within CIGFO identified seven “cross-cutting” challenges facing multiple financial sector regulatory organizations, the final item listed being a new addition from the previous report. These seven challenges are:

  • Enhancing Oversight of Financial Institution Cybersecurity
  • Managing and Securing Information Technology at Regulatory Organizations
  • Sharing Threat Information
  • Ensuring Readiness for Crises
  • Strengthening Agency Governance
  • Managing Human Capital
  • Improving Contract and Grant Management

“It is important to address the Challenges in this report because financial-sector activities – such as consumer and commercial banking, and funding, liquidity and insurance services – were identified by the Department of Homeland Security, Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, as National Critical Functions,” the report states. “Those functions are so vital to the United States that any disruption, corruption, or dysfunction would have a debilitating effect on U.S. security, the national economy, and/or public health and safety.”

The report emphasizes the importance of the agencies tackling these challenges “holistically through coordination and information sharing.” It adds, “Considering issues on a whole-of-Government approach versus a siloed, agency-by-agency basis allows for more effective and efficient means to address Challenges through a coordinated approach.”

The CIGFO includes the IGs from the following:

  • Department of the Treasury (Chair)
  • Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
  • Federal Housing Finance Agency
  • Commodity Futures Trading Commission
  • Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System and the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection
  • National Credit Union Administration
  • Securities and Exchange Commission
  • Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program

Top Management and Performance Challenges Facing Financial-Sector Regulatory Organizations – July 2019, by the Council of Inspectors General on Financial Oversight