Why is Cyber Security Important for SMCR?

In the digital world, all businesses need to think about their cyber security, but for organisations that are handling people’s data, it is even more important. A serious security breach that results in personal data being lost, stolen, or accessed by unauthorised people could incur a hefty fine and reputational damage that can be hard to recover from. When managing SMCR for your organisation, ensuring that your data is protected and secure should be top of your priority list.

What is cyber security?

Cyber security is the systems, technologies, and controls that are put in place to ensure that the data your organisation holds is protected from unauthorised access. This could mean protection from an external threat such as cyber criminals looking to steal and exploit data, but it can also mean ensuring that data is only seen by those authorised to see it, even within your organisation.

With the risks of cyber attacks an ever-increasing threat, it’s important that organisations don’t see cyber security as a job for the IT department alone. The whole organisation should be aware of the correct protocols for handling data and ensuring it is processed within the guidelines set out by the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and regulatory bodies like the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

How does cyber security impact SMCR?

Cyber security is an important part of the Senior Manager and Certification Regime (SMCR) and expects that firms subject to SMCR have processes in place to ensure cyber resilience. For SMCR, the Chief Operations Senior Management Function (SMF 24) must be the individual responsible for the resilience of operations. Managing SMCR involves the logging and processing of important data which needs to remain secure and protected. Maintaining the security of this data can be even more challenging since the shift to hybrid working for many financial services organisations.

What if there is a data breach?

Despite all the processes and systems put in place to mitigate the risk, security breaches can still happen. It’s important to report a breach as soon as it’s identified. The impact of the breach will depend on the extent of it but for serious breaches organisations may need to pay a fine and will likely result in reputational damage. If the breach is seen to have been due to a lack of cyber resilience within the organisation, and therefore potentially avoidable, then the repercussions will likely be even more serious.

How can you protect your SMCR data against a breach?

Making sure the data that needs to be processed for SMCR is as secure as possible was a top priority for our PeopleClear SMCR solution. Using multiple manual spreadsheets can run the risk of data falling into the wrong hands, however, our automated system keeps all the information securely in one place. It allows you to partition the data according to permission levels so no one can access information they aren’t authorised to see.

Our solution is also ISO27001 certified and hosted by Amazon Web Services (AWS) to ensure the highest levels of cyber security and resilience. All data is encrypted in transit and at rest using AES-256 and our system offers two-factor authentication, adding an additional layer of security.


Find out more about how PeopleClear SMCR can help you to securely manage your compliance.