The European Central Bank (ECB) has announced that it will conduct a cyber resilience stress test on over 100 banks in Europe in 2024. This initiative reflects the increasing importance placed on cybersecurity in the financial industry and aims to ensure that banks are well-equipped to minimize disruptions and effectively restore operations in the event of a cyber incident .
The stress tests will assess the banks’ ability to respond to and recover from a successful cyber-attack, rather than solely focusing on prevention. The scenario for the test involves a deliberate disruption of the banks’ daily operations through a cyber-attack, allowing supervisors to observe and evaluate their response and recovery measures. Out of the 109 banks being tested, 28 will provide additional information to the ECB regarding their response to the simulated attack . This enhanced assessment will evaluate their coordination with other supervisory activities  .
The findings and lessons learned from these stress tests will be discussed with each bank as part of the wider 2024 Supervisory Review and Evaluation Process  . The main results of the stress tests are expected to be published in the summer of 2024. This focus on cyber resilience is a new addition to the ECB’s regular stress tests and reflects the growing concern over cyber threats in the banking sector. The insights gained from these stress tests will provide valuable guidance for banks to improve their cyber incident response and recovery strategies .
The cyber resilience stress test conducted by the ECB will have significant impacts on the banking sector. By evaluating banks’ ability to respond and recover from cyber-attacks, the test will help identify vulnerabilities and areas for improvement. The findings and lessons learned will enable banks to enhance their coordination with supervisory activities and strengthen their cyber incident response and recovery strategies. This proactive approach to cybersecurity will contribute to minimizing disruptions and ensuring the stability of the financial industry.