The Federal Reserve is launching their new web-based funds transfer service as a replacement to their DOS-based FedWire program. Called FedLine, this
new program seeks to provide the Fed's customers with more flexibility and options in transfering funds. The current system transfers about $1.8
trillion per day, with an average transfer of $3.5 million per transaction.
With little fanfare, the Federal Reserve will begin transferring the nation's money supply over an Internet-based system this month — a move
critics say could open the U.S.'s banking system to cyber threats.
The Fed moves about $1.8 trillion a day on a closed, stand-alone computer network. But soon it will switch to a system called FedLine Advantage, a
Proponents say the system is more efficient and flexible. The current system is outdated, using DOS — Microsoft's predecessor to the Windows
But security experts say the threat of outside access is too big a risk.
"The Fed is now going to be vulnerable in two distinct ways. A hacker could break in to the Fed's network and have full access to the system, or a
hacker might not have complete access but enough to cause a denial or disruptions of service," said George Kurtz, co-author of "Hacking Exposed"
and CEO of Foundstone, an Internet security company.
Please visit the link provided for the complete story.
In today's world of cyberterrorism and cyber-espionage I find it alarming that the Federal Reserve would even promote this product. As a
techonologist who happens to earn a living by developing systems over the internet I can understand the need to replace antiquated systems and provide
more functionality to customers; but customers should have signed a non-disclosure (which they surely did) and the Fed should have kept their mouth
shut about this.
As Ron Gula, president of Tenable Network Security, states in the article, no [online] system is 100% secure. This brings to mind three fears: a
massive disruption of internet capacity, specific DOS attacks and hacking into Fedline. Any of these could potentially bring the new system to its
knees. The duration of the outage/attack would determine the impact to our financial system.
[EDIT]: Interestingly, information on FedLine is quite accessible. Here's a google search page. I have not browsed the results yet
just sharing the information.
Google Search: www.google.com...
[edit on 8/16/2004 by titian]
[edit on 16-8-2004 by John bull 1]