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Financial Services Law Insights and Observations

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  • OCC to Host Workshops for Community Bank Directors in June

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance

    On June 20 and 21, the OCC will be hosting two workshops in Nashville for directors of national community banks and federal savings associations supervised by the OCC. The June 20 “Credit Risk” workshop will focus on ways to identify trends and recognize problems within a loan portfolio. In addition, the workshop will discuss board and management roles, how to stay informed of changes in credit risk, and how to effect change. The June 21 “Operational Risk” workshop will focus on the key components of operational risk, and also cover governance, third-party risk, vendor management, and cybersecurity.

    Additionally, from June 26 to 28, the OCC will be hosting a “Building Blocks for Directors” workshop in Atlanta for directors, senior management team members, and other key executives of national community banks and federal savings associations supervised by the OCC. The workshop will: (i) focus on the duties and core responsibilities of directors and management; (ii) discuss major laws and regulations; and (ii) provide insight on the examination process.

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance OCC Risk Management Vendor Management

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  • OCC to Host Credit Risk and Operational Workshops for Directors of National Community Banks and Federal Savings Associations; Banking Agencies to Conduct Webinar to Introduce New FFIEC Call Report

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance

    On March 2, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) announced that it will host two workshops in Phoenix on April 11-12 for directors of OCC supervised national community banks and federal associations. The Credit Risk workshop (April 11) will cover strategies to recognize trends and problems in credit risk within the loan portfolio, and the Operational Risk workshop (April 12) will discuss key components of operational risk, governance, third-party risk, vendor management, and cybersecurity.

    Also on March 2, four members of the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) (Federal Reserve Board, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, and the Conference of State Bank Supervisors) announced the implementation of the new streamlined FFIEC 051 Call Report, effective March 31, 2017, that will introduce burden-reducing changes to the existing versions of the Call Report and will be available to eligible small institutions. “’Eligible small institutions’ are [defined as] institutions with domestic offices only and total assets of less than $1 billion, excluding those that are advanced approaches institutions for regulatory capital purposes.” The revisions to the requirements are subject to approval by the OMB. On March 8, the FFIEC will conduct a webinar from 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. ET to introduce the new Call Report and explain the revisions.

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance OCC FFIEC Community Banks Federal Reserve FDIC Call Report Vendor Management

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  • NYDFS Landmark Cybersecurity Rule Set to Take Effect on March 1

    State Issues

    On February 16, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that with the New York Department of Financial Services’ (NYDFS) publication of a Final Regulation, New York’s “First-in-the-Nation Cybersecurity Regulation” is set to take effect on March 1.  As discussed previously in InfoBytes, the regulation—which requires banks, insurance companies, and other financial services institutions regulated by NYDFS to establish and maintain a cybersecurity program designed to protect consumers’ private data—imposes broad and, in some cases proscriptive, data security and cybersecurity requirements on Covered Entities that venture into new territory for both state and federal financial regulators. Indeed, as described by Governor Cuomo, the regulation reflects New York’s efforts to “lead[] the nation” through “decisive action to protect consumers and our financial system from serious economic harm that is often perpetrated by state-sponsored organizations, global terrorist networks, and other criminal enterprises.”  

    Moreover, as detailed in a follow-up InfoBytes Special Alert, NYDFS issued a updated proposed regulation on December 28 in response to over 150 comments and testimony presented at a hearing before New York State lawmakers. Though the updated proposed regulation did not differ drastically from the original, the revised proposed regulation provided for somewhat greater flexibility in how covered entities could go about implementing the requirements. Among other things, the December 28 revisions provided for: (i) longer timeframes for compliance with its requirements; (ii) more flexibility for compliance with certain requirements and acknowledgement that some requirements may not be applicable to all financial institutions; and (iii) clarifications to certain key definitions.

    The newly released Final Regulation retains the revisions incorporated in the December 28 revision, but also contains the following notable revisions:

    • Record retention requirements for audit trail materials relating to Cybersecurity Events were reduced from five years to three years.
    • Clarification that Covered Entities’ policies and procedures for reporting by Third Party Service Providers of Cybersecurity Events only apply to the Covered Entity’s Nonpublic Information.
    • The limited exemption for small businesses to certain requirements of the rule has been narrowed by including a Covered Entity’s New York affiliates when calculating its number of employees and annual revenue.
    • Further clarification on the exemptions for companies regulated under New York’s Insurance Law.

    With the expiration of the 30-day comment period and the publication of the Final Rule, New York’s Cybersecurity regulation is officially cleared to become effective upon publication in the New York State Register on March 1.

    InfoBytes will continue to monitor the rollout of this pioneering regulation as it progresses.

    State Issues Agency Rule-Making & Guidance Bank Regulatory NYDFS Privacy/Cyber Risk & Data Security Vendor Management 23 NYCRR Part 500

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  • FDIC Releases 2016 Annual Report; Separately, FDIC’s OIG Issues Report Critical of Bank Service Provider Contracts

    Privacy, Cyber Risk & Data Security

    On February 15, the FDIC released  its 2016 Annual Report–which includes, among other things, the audited financial statements of the Deposit Insurance Fund and the Federal Savings and Loan Insurance Corporation (FSLIC) Resolution Fund. The report also provides an overview of key FDIC initiatives, performance results and other aspects of FDIC operations.

    Separately, on the same day, the FDIC’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) released an Audit Report (EVAL-17-004) on the adequacy of a small but random sample of contracts between FDIC-supervised institutions and their technology service providers (TSPs), in light of federal law and banking agency guidance on customer privacy-protection and how to properly manage third-party relationships. All sampled contracts had been designated as “critical” or “high” risk to the supervised institutions’ operations. The OIG specifically evaluated, and generally found insufficient, the clarity of contract provisions on TSP obligations regarding: (i) business continuity planning; and (ii) responding to and reporting on cybersecurity incidents. Despite the insufficiencies noted, the OIG acknowledged that because many contracts were negotiated before some of the relevant guidance was issued, “more time is needed to allow FDIC and FFIEC efforts to have a demonstrable” impact on contractual language.

    As a result of these findings, the OIG recommended—and FDIC management agreed—that the agency, after allowing appropriate time for current guidance to be implemented, conduct a “full horizontal review to assess” any continued presence of the contractual insufficiencies noted in the report. The FDIC will “prepare” that horizontal review in 2018.

    Privacy/Cyber Risk & Data Security FDIC FFIEC OIG Vendor Management

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  • OCC Supplements Exam Procedures Covering Third-Party Relationships: Risk Management Guidance

    Federal Issues

    On January 24, the OCC released Bulletin 2017-7 advising national banks, federal savings associations and technology service providers of examination procedures issued to supplement Bulletin 2013-29, “Third-Party Relationships: Risk Management Guidance,” issued October 30, 2013. As previously summarized in BuckleySandler’s Special Alert, Bulletin 2013-29 requires banks and federal savings associations (collectively “banks”) to provide comprehensive oversight of third parties, and warns that failure to have in place an effective risk management process commensurate with the risk and complexity of a bank’s third-party relationships “may be an unsafe and unsound banking practice.” Bulletin 2013-29 outlined a “life cycle” approach and provided detailed descriptions of steps that a bank should consider taking at five important stages of third-party relationships: (i) planning; (ii) due diligence and third party selection; (iii) contract negotiation; (iv) ongoing monitoring; and (v) termination. Following the OCC's issuance of Bulletin 2013-29, the Federal Reserve Board, on December 5, 2013, issued Supervision and Regulation Letter 13-19, which details and attaches the Fed’s Guidance on Managing Outsourcing Risk (SR 13-19). The FRB Guidance is substantially similar to Bulletin 2013-29.

    Bulletin 2017-7 outlines procedures designed to help prudential bank examiners: (i) tailor supervisory examinations of each bank commensurate with the level of risk and complexity of the bank’s third-party relationships; (ii) assess the quantity of the bank’s risk associated with its third-party relationships; (iii) assess the quality of the bank’s risk management of third-party relationships involving critical activities; and (iv) determine whether there is an effective risk management process throughout the life cycle of the third-party relationship. Consistent with the life cycle approach established in Bulletin 2013-29, the examination procedures identify steps examiners should take in requesting information relevant to assessing the banks’ third-party relationship risk management relative to each phase of the life cycle.

    For additional background, please see our Spotlight Series: Vendor Management in 2015 and Beyond.

    Federal Issues Banking Federal Reserve OCC Risk Management Vendor Management

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  • CFPB Clarifies "Flexibility" in Third-Party Risk Management

    Federal Issues

    On November 1, the CFPB issued an update to its previous guidance on risk management for third-party service providers. The update is substantially similar to the Bureau’s previous guidance on third-party risk management, but clarifies that the depth and formality of an entity’s risk management program for service providers may vary depending upon (i) the service being performed, and (ii) the service provider’s compliance with federal consumer financial laws and regulations. With this update, the CFPB emphasized that supervised entities have flexibility to allow appropriate risk management of these relationships.

    Federal Issues Banking Consumer Finance CFPB Risk Management Vendor Management

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  • CFPB Reissues Guidance on Service Providers

    Federal Issues

    On October 26, the CFPB published Bulletin 2016-02 on service providers to amend previously issued guidance covered in Bulletin 2012-03. Bulletin 2016-02 seeks to clarify that supervised banks and nonbanks have flexibility in managing the risks of service provider relationships. Specifically, the CFPB advises that “the depth and formality of the risk management program for service providers may vary depending upon the service being performed —its size, scope, complexity, importance and potential for consumer harm—and the performance of the service provider in carrying out its activities in compliance with Federal consumer financial laws and regulations.” The CFPB plans to post Bulletin 2016-02 on its website on October 31, 2016.

    Federal Issues Banking Consumer Finance CFPB Nonbank Supervision Bank Supervision Vendor Management

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  • California AG Harris Launches New Consumer Privacy Tool

    State Issues

    On October 14, California AG Harris released an online complaint form designed to help consumers report potential violations of the California Online Privacy Protection Act (CalOPPA). Pursuant to the CalOPPA, commercial websites and online services collecting consumer information are required to post privacy policies that include “the categories of information collected, the types of the third parties with whom the operator may share that information, instructions regarding how the consumer can review and request changes to his or her information, and the [policy’s] effective date.” As part of AG Harris’s “multi-pronged” effort to improve online privacy for consumers, the form will allow consumers to “crowdsource” privacy policy violations, thus “exponentially increasing the California Department of Justice’s ability to identify and notify those in violation of CalOPPA.”

    State Issues State Attorney General Data Collection / Aggregation Privacy/Cyber Risk & Data Security Vendor Management

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  • Federal Banking Agencies Consider Joint ANPR to Address Cybersecurity Standards

    Federal Issues

    On October 19, the FDIC, the OCC, and the Federal Reserve, issued an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) to further the “development of enhanced cyber risk management standards for the largest and most interconnected entities under their respective supervisory jurisdictions, and those entities’ service providers.” These standards, according to the ANPR, are intended to “increase the operational resilience” of supervised entities and their service providers and, based on the interconnectedness of these entities, “reduce the impact on the financial system in case of a cyber event experienced by one of these entities.” The ANPR proposes organizing enhanced cyber standards into the following categories: (i) cyber risk governance; (ii) cyber risk management; (iii) internal dependency management; (iv) external dependency management; and (v) incident response. The ANPR further explains that the banking agencies “are considering implementing the enhanced standards in a tiered manner, imposing more stringent standards on the systems of those entities that are critical to the functioning of the financial sector.” Comments on the ANPR, which would not apply to community banks, are due January 17, 2017.

    Federal Issues FDIC Banking Federal Reserve OCC Agency Rule-Making & Guidance Privacy/Cyber Risk & Data Security Vendor Management

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  • FFIEC Revises Information Security Booklet

    Privacy, Cyber Risk & Data Security

    On September 9, the FFIEC updated its Information Security booklet, a key element of its Information Technology Examination Handbook. The booklet is intended to provide examiners with guidance on assessing a financial institution’s information security operations, and is divided into the following four main sections: (i) Governance of the Information Security Program; (ii) Information Security Program Management; (iii) Security Operations; and (iv) Information Security Program Effectiveness. In addition to offering technology-centric recommendations such as encryption, the booklet advises firms to create security processes and risk assessment “commensurate with their operational complexities.” It also advises financial institutions to “have strong board and senior management support, promote integration of security activities and controls throughout the institution’s business processes, and establish clear accountability for carrying out security responsibilities.” As expected, the booklet highlights the importance of implementing effective oversight of third-party service providers. Pursuant to sub-section II.C.20, in order to ensure effective oversight of third-party service providers, management should, among other things, determine when third-parties identify, measure, mitigate, monitor, and report cyber risks so as to “facilitate a comprehensive understanding of the institution’s exposure to third-party cyber threats.”

    Examination FFIEC Vendor Management Privacy/Cyber Risk & Data Security

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