How Firms Can Guarantee Compliant Business Continuity

Securing Business Continuity and Remote Working – How Can You Guarantee Compliance?

Today, Business Continuity Measures are being stretched and challenged like never before. With financial firms deploying and scaling emergency compliant remote-working plans to an unprecedented level, how can they ensure that all staff remain connected and productive over the coming months, while remaining in-line with regulation?

At SOTERIA, this is a process that we are familiar with, and have already gone through our own rigorous business continuity assessments and testing to ensure we can operate all of our systems and processes remotely. Indeed, we are already helping financial firms through this process, sharing our knowledge that we have gained through supporting global network operator, Truphone, for its compliant mobile voice and SMS capture solution for over 10 years, in addition to supporting all current major vendor BYOD applications, video conferencing platforms, and collaboration messaging and email tools, globally.

What are your options?

Technology companies, like SOTERIA, know the barriers and challenges that come hand-in-hand with deploying and operating workloads within a cloud environment. Automation services, that can be developed to inoculate your business-critical environments immediately, are fundamental to ensuring a successful cloud transition and seamless workflow.

To enable firms to stay productive and efficient, they need the ability to collaborate with colleagues and other contacts at all times, just as if they were in the office. While there are several excellent options available, how can firms ensure all off their collaboration tools are being recorded and available-upon-demand for review or investigation, especially during a time where previous providers or newly-selected entrants’ offerings have been found to have left organisations exposed and open to fines?

The key to enabling firms to operate proactively, is for chosen solutions to provide real-time, high-quality recording, with transcription where required, and for data to be kept in one single cloud location on “hot” storage; this is to ensure that business-critical information can immediately be alerted upon, searched for and reviewed together, at any time, without being charged for the privilege. Expensive cloud migration projects can also become a thing of the past as, in most cases, we have personally been able to deliver this service ‘cost-neutrally’ to businesses, through carefully-considered consolidation of redundant or siloed systems, and subsequent implementation of a more efficient, streamlined business framework.

Additionally, further cost reductions are possible through the eradication of hardware, security, networking, and data centre capital procurement, as it can all be provided within one solution.

As for system security, the sudden increase in homeworking has left many corporate infrastructures vulnerable to attack. As the owners of our own multi-tenanted, private cloud (which is currently PEN-tested every quarter by 10 of the 12 largest global investment houses, and bi-annually by an independent auditor), we are familiar with the level of security that a cloud service must offer. An accompanying immutable ledger, verifying the integrity and completeness of all captured data, as well as all system and user activity, must be available to ensure financial firms have the necessary support they need for any regulatory enquiries. Cloud services also need to ensure that critical services are delivered with a guaranteed uptime of 99.99%. Be warned: if a potential cloud provider is unable to provide proof of these vital technical specifications prior to procurement, do not continue with the purchase.

Ensuring business continuity, is not as difficult as it might first be thought, providing that firms collaborate with the right technology partner. Myth buster: there is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ solution that will solve every business ailment out of the box. Any procured solution should be carefully tailored to the subtle “uniques” of a business’s operational footprint, as this enables firms to remain focused on delivering what their customers and stakeholders require, while being reassured that they are operating compliantly. The process, however, doesn’t have to be a time-consuming one and again, the right technology partner will be able to work with experience, integrity and, most importantly, agility.

So, all of my collaboration tools and interactions are recorded.  What about voice assurance?

For some time, financial firms have been under increasing pressure to reduce the risk of regulatory investigation and reputational damage, as well as control costs within their voice recording environments. Currently, with the majority of quality and up-time testing having to be carried out manually within these businesses, the impact on human resource and budgets is severe.

SOTERIA’s Audio Assure removes the significant risks associated with business oversight, manual error and non-compliance, while offering an increase in efficiency though reducing the dependency on human resource, minimising financial overheads, and ensuring that the solution is compliant with all major global regulations, including SM&CR, MiFID II, RegBI and MAR.

From a technical standpoint, Audio Assure marries together the ability to non-intrusively test the integrity and availability of individual endpoints, be they Private Wires or DDI number ranges for TDM, SIP-based telephony or Trader Voice positions, and also mobile network lines or application-based end points, for those who work remotely.

Greater operational flexibility can be adopted through Audio Assure’s ability to test all local and global circuits and end points, from one single location. Additionally, automated line quality testing, using pre-determined scripts or DTMF tones, can be custom scheduled according to time, dates and percentage of channels requiring testing.

Perhaps the most interesting aspect of the solution offering is the ability to perform CD-R Reconciliation, complete with real-time monitoring of call and recording durations, to enable firms to resolve CD-R records from their business communications with channels from their PBX or Trader Voice positions.

The in-built UTC-time stamped Audit function, that creates a globally-dispersed, immutable ledger relating to all records and system activity for evidential integrity purposes, together with its automated alerting and reporting capabilities, means that Audio Assure can provide a transformational shift in how firms currently approach voice environment testing.