Risk
8/3/2004
12:36 PM
Commentary
Commentary
Commentary
50%
50%

Banking and Terror: Business As Usual?

Amid the sprawl of government contractors that ring Washington, D.C. lies an IBM facility that acts as a backup site for many of the nation's largest financial institutions. Not two weeks ago, I toured the facility during a media event arranged by Visa USA, which was showcasing its annual capacity-planning testing process in preparation for the holiday season.

Amid the sprawl of government contractors that ring Washington, D.C. lies an IBM facility that acts as a backup site for many of the nation's largest financial institutions. Not two weeks ago, I toured the facility during a media event arranged by Visa USA, which was showcasing its annual capacity-planning testing process in preparation for the holiday season.The highlight of the tour was the data center, a 105,000 square-foot hardened shell filled with processors and storage. Off to one side is a telecommunications room, containing what looks like a giant ventilation shaft coming through the wall, but which is in fact an ultra-high bandwidth pipeline connecting the banks to the IBM data center which, in the event of a disaster, would continue to process mortgage payments and credit-card transactions on up to to multibillion-dollar foreign exchange and interbank settlements, without so much as a hiccup. Other than its size, what struck me about the room was its solitude; not a person was present. When I asked our tour guide why, he said, "We don't want anyone in here." He said he'd had a deuce of a time persuading IBM to grant us clearance. I was lucky; if the visit had been scheduled this week, it almost certainly would have been canceled. Over the weekend, the Department of Homeland Security issued a terror alert raising the threat level for financial institutions in New York, New Jersey, and Washington. While the financial-services industry has tried to strike a "business as usual" posture, my hunch is that the data center, still quiet as ever, is humming with activity as banks test their emergency backup plans, for if ever an occasion warranted it, this is it. I've asked IBM if this is the case; it declined to comment. But it's a safe bet that the telecom pipe that connects into the sinews of American finance is bulging with information this week, if only as an exercise.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
Dark Reading Live EVENTS
INsecurity - For the Defenders of Enterprise Security
A Dark Reading Conference
While red team conferences focus primarily on new vulnerabilities and security researchers, INsecurity puts security execution, protection, and operations center stage. The primary speakers will be CISOs and leaders in security defense; the blue team will be the focus.
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win a Starbucks Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: This comment is waiting for review by our moderators.
Current Issue
Security Vulnerabilities: The Next Wave
Just when you thought it was safe, researchers have unveiled a new round of IT security flaws. Is your enterprise ready?
Flash Poll
[Strategic Security Report] How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Problem
[Strategic Security Report] How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Problem
Enterprises are spending more of their IT budgets on cybersecurity technology. How do your organization's security plans and strategies compare to what others are doing? Here's an in-depth look.
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2017-0290
Published: 2017-05-09
NScript in mpengine in Microsoft Malware Protection Engine with Engine Version before 1.1.13704.0, as used in Windows Defender and other products, allows remote attackers to execute arbitrary code or cause a denial of service (type confusion and application crash) via crafted JavaScript code within ...

CVE-2016-10369
Published: 2017-05-08
unixsocket.c in lxterminal through 0.3.0 insecurely uses /tmp for a socket file, allowing a local user to cause a denial of service (preventing terminal launch), or possibly have other impact (bypassing terminal access control).

CVE-2016-8202
Published: 2017-05-08
A privilege escalation vulnerability in Brocade Fibre Channel SAN products running Brocade Fabric OS (FOS) releases earlier than v7.4.1d and v8.0.1b could allow an authenticated attacker to elevate the privileges of user accounts accessing the system via command line interface. With affected version...

CVE-2016-8209
Published: 2017-05-08
Improper checks for unusual or exceptional conditions in Brocade NetIron 05.8.00 and later releases up to and including 06.1.00, when the Management Module is continuously scanned on port 22, may allow attackers to cause a denial of service (crash and reload) of the management module.

CVE-2017-0890
Published: 2017-05-08
Nextcloud Server before 11.0.3 is vulnerable to an inadequate escaping leading to a XSS vulnerability in the search module. To be exploitable a user has to write or paste malicious content into the search dialogue.