Press Releases
Press Release
For Immediate Release March 30, 2015


FFIEC Releases Two Statements on Compromised Credentials and Destructive Malware

The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) today released two statements about ways that financial institutions can identify and mitigate cyber attacks that compromise user credentials or use destructive software, known as malware. In addition, the FFIEC provided information on what institutions can do to prepare for and respond to these threats.

Cyber attacks have increased in frequency and severity over the past two years. The attacks often involve the theft of credentials used by customers, employees, and third parties to authenticate themselves when accessing business applications and systems. Cyber criminals can use stolen credentials to commit fraud or identity theft, modify and disrupt information system, and obtain, destroy, or corrupt data. Also, cyber criminals often introduce malware to business systems through e-mail attachments, connecting infected external devices, such as USB drives, to computers or networks, or by introducing the malware directly onto the business systems using compromised credentials.

In accordance with FFIEC guidance, institutions should:

  • Securely configure systems and services;
  • Review, update, and test incident response and business continuity plans;
  • Conduct ongoing information security risk assessments;
  • Perform security monitoring, prevention, and risk mitigation;
  • Protect against unauthorized access;
  • Implement and test controls around critical systems regularly;
  • Enhance information security awareness and training programs; and
  • Participate in industry information-sharing forums, such as the Financial Services Information Sharing and Analysis Center.

The FFIEC also highlighted the following resources that provide practical information for strengthening user awareness regarding safe online practices.

Attachment: FFIEC Statement on Destructive Malware (PDF)

                   FFIEC Statement on Compromising Credentials (PDF)


Media Contacts:

CFPB Sam Gilford (202) 435-7673
FDIC Greg Hernandez (202) 898-6984
Federal Reserve Eric Kollig (202) 452-2955
NCUA Ben Hardaway (703) 518-6333
OCC Stephanie Collins (202) 649-6870
SLC Catherine Woody (202) 728-5733

The FFIEC was established in March 1979 to prescribe uniform principles, standards, and report forms and to promote uniformity in the supervision of financial institutions. The Council has six voting members: the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, the National Credit Union Administration, and the State Liaison Committee. The Council’s activities are supported by interagency task forces and by an advisory State Liaison Committee, comprised of five representatives of state agencies that supervise financial institutions.