Origo’s Unipass Mailock has seen the number of encrypted emails sent through the system jump 150%, from 1 million to 2.5 million in just six months.
The secure email system protects emails in transit and ensures that only the intended recipient can access the content. It also provides an audit trail for compliance purposes.
The system is used by major industry providers, such as Aegon and Royal London, to secure their email exchanges with financial advice firms, as well as by financial advisers protecting their communications with clients, particularly where confidential and transactional information/data is being passed between them. Many platforms and providers are also realising email protection is now essential and taking action.
Anthony Rafferty, CEO Origo, says: “Unfortunately, email is vulnerable to hacking and criminals see financial services firms from small advisers through to large providers as targets.
“The risk to businesses is not just potentially having to compensate clients for losses, and meeting fines imposed by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), but the effect on client trust and the reputation of the business.
“Email is such an everyday part of our lives that it’s very easy for victims not to notice that they have been hacked until it is too late. Common ploys used by criminals are to obtain access to the email of a manager authorised to sign off invoices and commit fraud by having the accounts department pay a false invoice, or to impersonate a client and have the provider/adviser firm make payments into a false account.
“And it only takes one mistake by a company to allow the criminals into their system.
“This is why we believe that just as anti-virus/malware protection is now base-level security for financial services firms, working quietly in the background, so encrypted email is the next layer of protection required by financial services firms to safeguard them against this potential point of vulnerability.”