Forrester Research on ATM Security: How Prepared Are You?

Forrester Research on ATM Security: How Prepared Are You?

This is the first post in a three part series introducing the results from a recent commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Diebold. The objective of the study was to explore the challenges retail banks face when managing the security of their ATM fleets. Forrester conducted a global survey of 220 business and IT decision-makers with responsibility for the security and management of ATMs at retail banks.

Imagine that you are asked two questions.  The first is probably easy – how many ATMs are in your fleet?

Then the second question hits – what percentage of those devices can you say are overwhelmingly protected from security threats?

If you balked a bit at being expected to answer that second question, especially in any public forum, you are not alone. According to recent findings from Forrester, financial institutions (FIs) around the world lack full confidence in their current ATM security strategies and programs. As a survey respondent and VP of operations from a North American retail bank stated, “ATM security is getting bigger than we can handle.” Another respondent shared, “Security has to be updated at any cost.”

In the face of today’s ever-evolving digital threat landscape and the ongoing attempts at physical breaches, protecting your business and its self-service channel is undoubtedly a complex challenge. Securing and protecting your ATM fleets is a function requiring a considerable amount of manpower, management and technology.

It’s a massive undertaking – no matter the size of your business. Forrester’s research found that FIs are feeling challenged, and outlined four key findings that I’m sure many organizations can empathize with:

  1. FIs lack confidence in their current ATM security.

The FIs surveyed have between 100 and 499 ATMs operating regionally. Additionally, 21 to 30 percent of all in-house security efforts are tied to ATMs.

There is no room for error when dealing with information security, physical security, card skimming, phishing, etc.

  1. Managing security is a bigger task than internal teams can handle.

Most retail banks choose to manage security in-house, which leads to a need for greater internal resources and eventually, the internal management model is not sustainable.

  1. Technology and resource issues create a whole other set of challenges.

Not only are some in-house ATM management strategies unmanageable, FIs also have to keep up with changing ATM security needs and compliance requirements.

Respondents identified these main ATM security challenges as anything from lack of technology to the changing nature of the threat landscape.

These challenges are compounded when FIs use multiple ATM providers because of the separate sets of software and updates for the fleet.

  1. Financial institutions consider partners for support – but are concerned about handing over control.

As ATM networks grow and threats continue to evolve, it will only get harder for internal security teams to handle the onslaught of complex challenges and attacks alone. Forrester recommends that FIs consider a managed services partner to properly – and proactively – secure their ATM fleets.

In fact, Forrester reveals that financial institutions who have outsourced their ATM fleet management to a trusted provider with the right expertise, structure and processes see improved security as a result. Outsourcing was also found to reduce costs, mitigate future risks and find new ways to eliminate breaches.

Furthermore, the study reveals a gap between the perceived benefits of outsourcing and the actual benefits of outsourcing. FIs anticipate improved reliability and customer availability, when in reality, they’re most satisfied with enhanced security and faster breach mitigation.

So ask yourself: do you still want to shoulder the responsibility of ATM security, or would you like to focus on your organization’s core competencies and partner with a trusted expert who can help design a strategy that’s right for your unique needs?

I encourage you to download the full research study. The 11-page Forrester study, “Why Financial Institutions Should Consider Managed Services For Their ATM Fleet” includes an executive summary, key findings and recommendations.

In addition, we have an Infographic, On-Demand Presentation and a Roundtable Q&A surrounding common ATM security questions.

You can find those materials here.

Read part two of the series.

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