Press Release
For Immediate Release August 11, 2021

 

FFIEC Issues Guidance on Authentication and Access to Financial Institution Services and Systems  


The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC), on behalf of its members, today issued guidance that provides financial institutions with examples of effective authentication and access risk management principles and practices for customers, employees, and third parties accessing digital banking services and information systems.


The guidance:

  • Highlights the current cybersecurity threat environment including increased remote access by customers and users, and attacks that leverage compromised credentials; and mentions the risks arising from push payment capabilities.
  • Recognizes the importance of the financial institutionís risk assessment to determine appropriate access and authentication practices to determine the wide range of users accessing financial institution systems and services.
  • Supports a financial institutionís adoption of layered security and underscores weaknesses in single-factor authentication.
  • Discusses how multi-factor authentication or controls of equivalent strength can more effectively mitigate risks.
  • Includes examples of authentication controls, and a list of government and industry resources and references to assist financial institutions with authentication and access management.

The new guidance replaces previous documents issued in 2005 and 2011.


Attachment:

FFIEC Authentication and Access to Financial Institution Services and Systems Guidance (PDF)


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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. It also conducts schools for examiners employed by the five federal member agencies represented on the FFIEC and makes those schools available to employees of state agencies that supervise financial institutions. The Council consists of the following six voting members: a member of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System; the Chairman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation; the Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau; the Comptroller of the Currency; the Chairman of the National Credit Union Administration; and the Chairman of the State Liaison Committee.


Media Contacts:

Federal Reserve Chelcee Stearns (202) 452-5228
CFPB Mike Robinson (202) 597-4022
FDIC LaJuan Williams-Young (202) 898-3876
NCUA Ben Hardaway (703) 518-6333
OCC Stephanie Collins (202) 649-6870
SLC Laura Fisher (202) 812-9813