High-profile cyberattacks and internal technology failures are a constant theme in industry news. Banking and financial services organizations must take an aggressive stance to enable infrastructure security and resiliency, otherwise they risk irreparable harm to their reputations and business viability (see: Equifax). This challenge is further amplified by continually evolving regulatory requirements creating a barrier to speed and innovation.
Impacted by rapid organic growth, as well as several recent mergers and acquisitions, a large retail banking customer was challenged to transform their legacy infrastructure and operations. Most financial services firms run on complex, sprawling, outdated legacy structures that have been patched over multiple times by various people as new technology has emerged. Often the people who first set up these infrastructures have moved on from the company, leaving their successors with a complex, opaque network of applications which depend on each other in unseen ways, with no complete picture of how the system works.
The use of data has also become more complex and more difficult to defend. No longer is sensitive data centralized in one repository and protected by a single firewall. Data is stored and shared between multiple locations (on-premise, cloud, hybrid), through third-party applications, and on employee and customer devices.
To overcome these hurdles, a large retail banking customer needed to design, build, and efficiently operate a resilient, agile, intelligent and automated infrastructure for the firm to both prevent and survive cyber extinction level events.
To achieve this objective, the customer and WWT took a holistic approach cutting across all IT functions: network, storage, compute, security and operations. Originally made up of 17 individual teams and 23 individual projects, WWT developed a comprehensive program organized into multiple interconnected work streams:
The full breadth of the Advanced Technology Center (ATC) was leveraged first to evaluate the latest technology within each area as individual components and then as integrated solutions. Beyond evaluation, the ATC continued to serve as a development sandbox for integrating and testing a multi-OEM enterprise reference architecture. This allowed WWT and the customer test solutions before deploying into the customer’s environment.
The customer achieved the primary goal of establishing an infrastructure capable of preventing and surviving a catastrophic cybersecurity event. Through this process the customer has also transformed their IT technology, processes and organization resulting in: