SOURCE: The Financial Services Sector Coordinating Council for Critical Infrastructure Protection

August 30, 2006 12:24 ET

Financial Services Sector Better Prepared for Disaster Since 9/11

CHICAGO, IL -- (MARKET WIRE) -- August 30, 2006 -- Since the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, the financial services industry has worked to ensure it can meet the financial needs of Americans in the event of a disaster -- whether man-made or natural.

As a target of the World Trade Center attack, the financial sector was again reminded of the need for preparedness. The actions taken have been effective, as a federal interagency report noted earlier this year, in making the sector "considerably more resilient" than it had been prior to 9/11.

One critical lesson learned on 9/11 was the importance of communication. Firms have, therefore, built new systems and procedures to communicate with employees, customers, vendors, utilities and regulators during and following a crisis.

To avert economic disruption on a wide scale, the financial services industry has developed better communication with federal agencies on security matters. The primary mechanism for this communication is the Financial Services Sector Coordinating Council for Critical Infrastructure Protection and Homeland Security (FSSCC).

FSSCC works with its members and the government to assemble the best information available on handling crises from terror attacks and blackouts to hurricanes and pandemics.

"The nation's banking, securities and insurance firms have been actively working to strengthen the financial infrastructure over the past five years," said George S. Hender, Chairman of FSSCC. "Working together, much has been accomplished, but the job is not done. The financial services sector is now working to ensure our increased resilience is matched by the sectors upon which we depend for power, telecommunications and basic operations."

About FSSCC:

The Financial Services Sector Coordinating Council for Critical Infrastructure Protection and Homeland Security (www.fsscc.org) is a group of more than 30 private-sector firms and financial trade associations that works to help reinforce the financial services sector's resilience against terrorist attacks and other threats to the nation's financial infrastructure. Formed in 2002, FSSCC works with the Department of Treasury, which has direct responsibility for infrastructure protection and homeland security efforts for the financial services sector, while also serving under the overall guidance of the Department for Homeland Security.

Contact Information