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Banks should use the dark web to learn of potential threats

Banks should be ahead of the curve when it comes to cyber-defences, former head of MI5 said recently. Lord Jonathan Evans said banks lacked “forward awareness” about the Dridex malware that left a few banks missing tens of millions of pounds from customers' bank accounts. He believes financial institutions should use the dark web to learn about any potential threats.

"Those players in the industry who are at the leading edge are the ones who have really invested in their intelligence capabilities - both on their own networks and also in a much more forward-leaning approach to understanding what's happening on hacker sites in terms of developing capabilities," Evans said at the Good Exchange Cybersecurity Summit in London on Wednesday in response to a question from IBTimes UK. "That is something where I think there is still work to do.

"Certainly giving yourself that forward awareness so that you're not waiting to see what arrives, you are out there trying to find out what might arrive, I think is quite a game changer. But it does require quite a lot of maturity in your systems in order to do that and it can be quite difficult for some companies to do that."

Yesterday the National Crime Agency (NCA) warned that thousands of UK computers may have been affected by the malware, which is also known as Bugat and Cridex.

It is believed that the malware was used before and has “earned” its creators more than £65 million so far. The malware infects computers and grabs user’s credentials, including passwords and sends it to the hackers, who then gain access to bank accounts.