The Fintech Open Source Foundation (FINOS), the foundation of open innovation in financial services and part of the Linux Foundation, has announced the formation of an open standard project, based upon an approach developed by FINOS Platinum Member Citi, to describe consistent controls for compliant public cloud deployments in the financial services sector.
As the pace of cloud adoption accelerates in a highly fragmented global regulatory landscape, this collaborative project aims to develop a unified set of cybersecurity, resiliency, and compliance controls for common services across the major cloud service providers (CSPs).
By developing a unified taxonomy of common services and associated threats, the project also sets out to alleviate the systemic risk of cloud concentration, an issue highlighted in recent reports from the U.S. Department of the Treasury, the UK HMT, the European Council, and the Monetary Authority of Singapore.
The project, initiated by Citi and approved in July by the FINOS Governing Board, has quickly garnered participation from more than 20 FINOS Member firms globally, including Bank of Montreal (BMO), Citi, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Royal Bank of Canada (RBC), London Stock Exchange Group (LSEG), Natwest Group, cloud service provider Google Cloud, and leading vendors such as GitHub, Red Hat, Symphony, Adaptive, Container Solutions, ControlPlane, GitLab, and Scott Logic.
“There is a need for a Cloud Standard that will improve certain security and control measures across the Financial Services industry, whilst simplifying and democratising access for all institutions to operate and benefit by leveraging the public cloud,” explains Jim Adams, Chief Technology Officer and Head of Technology Infrastructure at Citi.
“It is important to collaborate with our peers to ensure consistency across cloud service providers, ensuring the industry can realize true multi-cloud strategies.”
“Due to the sheer complexity and economic drivers of this challenge, no single vendor, financial institution, or regulator can define what it means for a financial cloud deployment to be compliant,” continues Gabriele Columbro, FINOS Executive Director and Linux Foundation Europe’s General Manager.
“The only way forward is open collaboration across constituents, hence why I’m truly excited to see so many FINOS Members quickly rallying around this project, which has the potential to become one of the most valuable and transformational initiatives in our open source community, and across the industry.”
This open standard is expected to expand on existing efforts like NIST’s OSCAL, the MITRE ATT&CK framework, and FINOS’ own Compliant Financial Infrastructure project, to build taxonomies on common cloud services, common threat techniques and associated mitigations, logical control descriptions, as well as cloud service specific data flow diagrams to understand common attack vectors in the service.
The project is inviting participation from financial institutions globally, CSPs, fintech and technology vendors, industry associations, and regulators to ensure broad representation of all constituents involved in the shared responsibility model.
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