WORM or be WARNED

Recently, in the FINRA Regulatory and Examination Priorities Letter the topic of Operational Risks, including cybersecurity and Rule 17a-4 were discussed.

This rule, as we know pertains to a firm’s obligation to preserve Broker-Dealer and Customer records in a non-writable, non-erasable format known as “Write Once Read Many” or simply “WORM.”

Unfortunately, for several firms in the recent past FINRA has elected to become more stringent with its enforcement of this rule and has levied substantial fines against those found to have been non-compliant.

The rule in itself serves as notice that our security and preservation goes beyond the most commonly considered measures; where firms stress the importance of maintaining legitimate password parameters, auto-locking terminals, monitoring home and branch offices and portable storage devices.

This rule also requires us to be cognizant of today’s ever changing world and all the twists and turns that come with it. It reminds us that at every corner we must consider the perils that face our industry and most in general. With our increasing dependence on technology to run and maintain our businesses, we become more susceptible to data loss stemming from internal technical issues, human error, viruses and possibly ransomware.

Third Party Vendors (D3P), such as DbCom – EQube have been able to successfully step in and assist several firms in complying with this regulation and avoid fines and potential data loss, by using their retention storage solutions. Firms can securely store all transaction’s data, database copies and logs, as well as, general ledgers in an online, reviewable and downloadable format that satisfies all WORM requirements for redundancies and provides long term data storage.

** http://www.finra.org/industry/2017-regulatory-and-examination-priorities-letter

SEC Rule and Fines forces a closer look at WORM retention practices

Posted by Anthony Falce, Senior Sales and Account Manager for DbCom – EQube

Reach out to Anthony at Anthony.falce@dbcomsys.com

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