Banking Committee to examine financial cybersecurity

The Senate Banking Committee next Wednesday will hold a hearing on cybersecurity in the financial sector.

Lawmakers and regulators have been pressuring banks to boost their cyber defenses in the wake of a major breach at JPMorgan that exposed the names, addresses, phone numbers and emails of 76 million households.


Senators will hear from officials at the FBI, Homeland Security Department, Secret Service and Treasury Department, among others.

Of particular interest will be the committee’s questions for Brian Peretti, the Treasury Department’s director of the Office of Critical Infrastructure Protection and Compliance Policy.

Committee Chairman Tim JohnsonTimothy (Tim) Peter JohnsonTrump faces tough path to Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac overhaul Several hurt when truck runs into minimum wage protesters in Michigan Senate GOP rejects Trump’s call to go big on gun legislation MORE (D-S.D.) and Ranking Member Mike CrapoMichael (Mike) Dean CrapoRepublican lobbying firms riding high despite uncertainty of 2020 race Lobbying World Ernst endorses bipartisan Grassley-Wyden bill to lower drug prices MORE (R-Idaho) recently pressed Treasury for information on the agency’s financial sector cyberattack mitigation strategy.

“It is vital that government agencies and private institutions remain vigilant and coordinated in ensuring the safety and security of our networks, especially as it applies to the valuable personal and financial information of American consumers,” they said.

The senators asked for details about how Treasury coordinates with other federal agencies on cyber, as well as how it interacts with banks about cyber intrusions.

As banks’ fears of cyberattacks have grown, the industry has enhanced its sharing of cyber threat information and increased cyber defense spending.

Not all regulators are convinced it’s enough.

Comptroller of the Currency Thomas Curry recently warned banks that the government would be conducting spot checks of firms’ cybersecurity measures.

An official from the comptroller’s office will testify at the hearing.

Despite much discussion, no legislation is expected to pass on the issue this Congress.