COVID-19 and Cyber Risk in the Financial Sector

Insights and recommendations for policy makers and businesses to mitigate cyber risks

During the COVID-19 pandemic, financial institutions have been at the leading edge of the response to cyber risk. Their already large exposure to cyber risk has been further accentuated by the move towards more working from home and other operational challenges. This paper serves as a primer on cyber risk and presents initial findings on how the financial sector has met the challenges of the pandemic. It draws on new data to assess changes in the threat landscape for financial institutions in the pandemic.

Key takeaways of the research are: 

  • The financial sector has been hit by hackers relatively more often than other sectors during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • While this has not yet led to significant disruptions or a systemic impact, there are substantial risks from cyber attacks for financial institutions, their staff and their customers going forward.
  • Financial authorities are working to mitigate cyber risks, including through international cooperation.

About this Publication

By Iñaki Aldasoro, Jon Frost, Leonardo Gambacorta , David Whyte