Fifteen trade associations representing the financial services and merchant industries announced on Thursday a cybersecurity partnership that will focus on exploring ways to bolster information-sharing efforts, enhance card security technology and maintain consumer trust.
The partnership includes the Retail Industry Leaders Association; Financial Services Roundtable; American Bankers Association; American Hotel & Lodging Association; The Clearing House; Consumer Bankers Association; Financial Services Forum; Food Marketing Institute; Electronic Transactions Association; Independent Community Bankers of America; International Council of Shopping Centers; National Association of Convenience Stores; National Grocers Association; National Restaurant Association; and National Retail Federation.
Cybercrime has emerged as a growing threat in recent years as technology advances and security vulnerabilities are revealed.
Fran Rosch, the senior vice president of security products and services, endpoint and mobility at security firm Symantec Corp., testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee earlier this month that approximately 378 million consumers were victims of cybercrime in 2013, with total costs estimated at $113 billion.
James Aramanda, the president and CEO of The Clearing House Association and Payments Company, said recent data breaches like those announced late last year “underscore the urgency to update the payments system and protect customers against recent and future threats.”
“Customers deserve a proactive approach—like the Secure Cloud tokenization initiative to protect consumer credentials that The Clearing House and its Owner Banks have undertaken—by banks and retailers alike to address these real and evolving threats,” Aramanda said. “This cyber partnership is consistent with such an approach and marks an important step to provide for collaboration, continued innovation and dynamism among all the relevant stakeholders to ensure that customer data will be safeguarded.”
ETA CEO Jason Oxman said all payment processors, networks, issuers and merchants have an interest in protecting the payment system.
“This partnership embodies these shared commitments,” Oxman said. “We look forward to working with our partners to protect and strengthen the payments system that processes almost $5 trillion in purchases each year.”
The trade groups will form working groups comprised of their own members, as well as member companies and other industry players. Working groups will focus on increasing threat information sharing and developing technologies that add security to consumer data within the payments system.