Investor group seeks probe into SEC hack

Investor group seeks probe into SEC hack
© Getty Images

A global investor group representing more than 95 million U.S. shareholders has requested an independent probe into a cyber breach at the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Reuters reports that the Investment Company Institute (ICI) is looking to probe the SEC's defense against cyber breaches before funds submit their performance data to the SEC. 

“What the SEC breach now makes very clear is precisely what we were concerned about - that market-sensitive information of that nature can be exploited to the disadvantage of millions and millions of investors,” ICI's Chief Executive Paul Schott Stevens told the publication. 

ADVERTISEMENT

The investor group has been weary of how the regulator safeguarded data since 2015. 

ICI's call for the probe comes after it was revealed that hackers had breached the SEC's system for public-company filings and may have profited from stolen insider information.

SEC Chairman Jay Clayton said hackers exploited a software vulnerability in the regulator's EDGAR filing system.

Clayton said the breach was discovered in 2016, but the regulator was not aware of the possibility of unlawful trading until 2017.

"Cybersecurity is critical to the operations of our markets and the risks are significant and, in many cases, systemic," he said in the statement. 

"We must be vigilant. We also must recognize--in both the public and private sectors, including the SEC--that there will be intrusions, and that a key component of cyber risk management is resilience and recovery."