Written by Terry R. Weiss and Matthew S. Johns

In the wake of recent cybersecurity breaches, the SEC and FINRA simultaneously issued reports this week to the securities industry summarizing cybersecurity examination findings and to investors recommending certain precautions to safeguard online investment information.

In its Risk Alert – Cybersecurity Examination Sweep Summary, the SEC describes the results from examinations of more than 100 broker-dealers and investment advisors, the relative split between the two being unspecified. Nevertheless, the findings reveal that the vast majority of broker-dealers and investment advisors have made cybersecurity a priority and implemented appropriate cybersecurity policies and programs. The findings also suggest that broker-dealers have more thorough cybersecurity policies and programs in place than investment advisors.


Continue Reading SEC, FINRA Issue Reports on Cybersecurity

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc. (FINRA) regulates member brokerage firms and exchange markets in the United States.

FINRA is a not-for-profit non-governmental organization that acts as a self-regulatory organization (SRO). SROs were created by the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 to enforce certain industry standards and requirements related to securities trading and brokerage. FINRA is subject to the oversight of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

FINRA licenses individuals and admits firms to the industry, writes rules to govern their behavior, examines them for regulatory compliance, and disciplines registered representatives and member firms that fail to comply with federal securities laws and FINRA’s rules and regulations. FINRA maintains the Central Registration Depository, a database of all registered individuals and firms. In addition, FINRA provides education and qualification examinations for securities industry professionals.


Continue Reading What is FINRA?