The Bank of England has called for a “collective solution” to tackle cyber security threats similar to the "super shield" system used in the US.
The US has implemented a private sector initiative called Sheltered Harbour to protect customers and financial institutions in the event that a cyber attack causes critical systems to fail.
Bank of England Supervisory Risk Specialists director Nick Strange said if individual institutions are unable to meet the resilience levels required in an upcoming cyber security stress test, then a collective approach may be necessary.
“A possible, and I only say possible, outcome of the cyber stress testing we are piloting may be that on their own, firms cannot meet the FPC’s proposed tolerance for payments system outage,” Strange said.
“If this were the case then it would either fall to the public or private sector to come up with a collective solution.”
Strange’s comments come after a number of serious cyber security breaches over the last few years, including the Wannacry ransomware attack which cost the NHS millions of pounds.
“Enhancing the operational resilience of the financial sector is therefore a priority for us all: it won’t completely stop bad things happening, but it will make us better at weathering their impacts,” he added.