What is SWIFT?

SWIFT was founded in 1973 by 239 banks from 15 countries as a way to  communicate about cross-border payments. From 239 banks to 11000+ worldwide, SWIFT has grown since then to be one of the best financial systems out there. The main features of the service where a set of message standards, a messaging platform, and a computer system to validate and route messages. In this day and age, SWIFT has continued to expand and offers various innovative products. Examples of these products are SWIFTNet and SWIFT CSP. SWIFTNet  is a swift network that helps banks and financial institutions communicate internationally, which can be beneficial for sending transactions globally and alerting other banks when a fraud has taken place.  But to better protect their extensive network of banks, SWIFT decided to create SWIFT CSP.

The Service  uses a set of mandatory security controls, community-wide information sharing initiatives, and improved security features on their products to detect, and prevent fraudulent activity.

Why is SWIFT CSP important?

SWIFT CSP is a security measure that protects financial institutions from cyberattacks. It is an extension of SWIFT’s existing security measures, which have been developed over the past 30 years and are based on the principle of cooperation between financial institutions. SWIFT CSP is also part of a wider industry-wide initiative to enable banks and other financial service providers to comply with new regulations such as General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), Financial Conduct Authority(FCA), Bank of Ghana Cyber and Information Security Directive, and Cybersecurity Act 2020.

The importance of SWIFT CSP to financial services in Ghana.

The finance sector in Ghana is a prime target for cyberattacks due to its high value, growing market share, and reliance on technology. According to the Bank of Ghana’s 2019 fraud report, cyber email scams have stolen a total fraud value of 50,542,043.92 cedis. These fraud cases will continue to rise if banks do not learn how to protect themselves and their customers from cybercriminals.

Attacks have steadily increased in frequency, duration, and complexity since 2020 because of the increase in remote work due to Covid 19 which emboldened cybercriminals. Cybercriminals are now targeting banking customers directly with sophisticated phishing campaigns, which can lead to financial and reputational losses for Ghana’s financial sector.

To protect banks and other financial institutions from facing these challenges, SWIFT CSP will be a crucial component of any financial institution’s compliance efforts.

How can Global Secure Solutions help?

Global Secure Solutions has helped hundreds of businesses like yours navigate the complex world of Swift CSP, and we’d love to help you, too.

Our consultants will work with you to perform a cybersecurity assessment of your SWIFT-related environment by conducting a gap analysis leading to self-attestation of compliance with the SWIFT Customer Security Controls Framework, so that your network and application infrastructure are as secure as possible.

We’re also approved in the Directory of CSP assessment providers, so you can rest assured that our team has the expertise and knowledge needed to perform this kind of assessment. And we’ll work with you every step of the way—from determining which controls are relevant for your organization, to scoping out where there are gaps in those controls, all the way through remediation.

We hope you found this article helpful and informative. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us at any time.