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    MFSA Amends Banking Rules, Consults on ICT-Related Incident Reporting

    July 12, 2022

    The Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA) published the guidelines for credit institutions under the reporting framework 3.0 (reporting under the Capital Requirements Directive), along with the revised Banking Rule BR/15 on capital buffers and Banking Rule BR/24 on internal governance of credit institutions; both the revised rules (BR/15 and BR/24) will come into force with immediate effect. Also published was a consultation document, along with a template, on the reporting of major information and communication technology (ICT)-related incidents. Finally, another publication is the annual report for 2021, which highlights the work done by MFSA during the past year.

    Amendments to Banking Rules. The key amendments include the following:

    • Amendment to BR/15 is in relation to an incorrect reference in paragraph 56 in order to change the reference to paragraph 49E to paragraph 52 accordingly.
    • Amendment to BR/24. The reference to the guidelines of the European Banking Authority (EBA) on information and communication technology (ICT) and security risk management (EBA/GL/2019/04) has been added to the requirement in paragraph 73(a) and added within the scope of the BR/24. In this regard, a new paragraph 295 is being added to cater for a general obligation of credit institutions to abide by the EBA guidelines as well as the MFSA guidance on technology arrangements, ICT and security risk management, and outsourcing arrangements. For implementation purposes, credit institution shall note that the EBA guidelines on ICT and security risk management were already applicable and in force through the MFSA guidance before this particular amendment to BR/24. This amendment is being undertaken only for clarity purposes.

    Consultation on reporting of major ICT-related incidents. According to the proposed updated major ICT-related incident reporting process, authorized persons will be expected to submit:

    • An initial report within four hours after an incident has been classified as major. Such classification is expected to take place within twenty-four hours after an incident has been detected.
    • An intermediate report within three working days from the submission of the initial report, irrespective of whether the incident has been resolved. An authorized person may provide one or more intermediate report/s at different stages within the resolution process.
    • A final report within twenty working days after business is deemed back to normal.

    This updated process does not replace or supersede any legal obligation by authorized persons to report incidents to other competent authorities. In establishing the updated process, MFSA takes into consideration the challenges with the current incident reporting process, the course that Digital Operational Resilience Act (DORA) is expected to be taking, and established incident reporting guidelines. This process will eventually have to be aligned with DORA when it enters into force. MFSA will communicate the method to securely submit major ICT related incident reports at a later stage. Annex 1 of the consultation documents sets out the major incident thresholds matrix. MFSA is requesting feedback on the consultation by August 05, 2022.


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    Keywords: Europe, Malta, Banking, Basel, Regulatory Capital, Internal Governance, ICT, Incident Reporting, Reporting, DORA, Regtech, Technology Risk, Outsourcing Arrangements, MFSA

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