Four Colossal Challenges For Financial Services Data Managers

Quoting an artist on the topic of the financial services industry is unusual, to say the least, but the late American singer and musician, Al Jarreau, comes to mind when he captured the essence of the modern day Financial Services challenge (at least from the consumer side) back in a November 2011 interview published in the Hartford Advocate, “I’m a little bit nervous for us with all of this electronically generated new hyper-space that we’ve moved into, where not only people but also economies and systems, like banking, are left to zeros and ones. I want to be more than a zero or one.”

Zeros and ones in hyper-space is no way to regard data in the financial services industry. It’s a lot more complex, both on a personal level and on a business level, than that.  Keeping information available—to the right people–when needed is critical, but locking it down to some degree matters at least as much.  Freedom and control are key, but to that, you’ve got to add a very strong dose of practicality to ensure that nothing gets lost, nothing gets stolen and nothing gets held hostage.  Blending all of those priorities is challenging.

  1. Regulation – complex enough if it came from just one regulating body, today’s institutions have to contend with multiple regulatory agencies and jurisdictions.  Specific regulations vary depending upon the overseeing government or NGO, but around the world, regulations like FACTA, GLBA, PCI, GDPR, MiFID II, BEAR and many more that govern the retention, protection and even elimination of data mean that information services organizations in financial services businesses have a lot to consider as they set their strategies for data management—and the targets keep moving.
  2. Competition – the challenges to traditional financial services are pushing boundaries and challenging established businesses.
  3. Disruption – cyber-currencies, peer-to-peer lending, crowd-funding and more, push the boundaries of financial services.
  4. Volume – the volume of data that financial services organizations must manage – ingest, store and use – is massive.  Maintaining it is not only a huge responsibility, but a complex and time-consuming reality.

Security, reliability and availability, blended with a good dose of freedom and control, are key to success.  No one works harder to ensure the right balance of those elements than the people managing data for banks, investment houses, insurance companies and others in the financial services sector.   It’s personal. Whether the data is related to present-day customers’ personal accounts and financial information or an archive of research data that can be mined and analyzed to develop today’s business strategies, the data has got to be there, intact and available, while being kept secure from criminals and competitors.

Scality RING is at work, preserving, securing and keeping data available for major top financial institutions around the world.  We hold a pivotal role in these companies, and help them maintain and grow their assets – already representing more than 11.5 trillion US dollars combined.

It starts by making the complex simple.  Scality RING is in place with these large financial institutions serving a variety of roles (and the best part is, it can all go onto one RING).  By way of example:

  • Petabyte-scale backup, with Scality RING as the target makes performing backups faster and easier, and data recovery a breeze.  One of our large banking customer started putting backups on Scality RING in 2015.  They’ve expanded (easily and without disruption, I might add) twice since the initial installation, and today their backups consume nearly 10PB of RAW storage space.  They continue to be impressed with the throughput, ease of recovery and impressive savings in TCO.  Many of our financial services customers start with the backup use case and build from there.
  • Cloud storage is another strong use case in this sector.  Many of our multinational banking customers use Scality RING for private cloud services.  They like the fact that it offers a standard S3 interface while having native file capabilities, thereby eliminating silos.
  • Multi-cloud is upon us, and finservices companies are really at the forefront of that wave, leveraging the most from IT.  Many of our customer in this sector have chosen  Scality RING for its cost containment, software-defined flexibility and hardware independence.  Its multi-cloud leadership takes that a step further, and has won us business with several of the world’s largest institutions.

At the end of that interview, Al Jarreau brought the conversation back to practicality, saying “And we really need to take care that our backups are in place.” Yes indeed, backups matter. Trust a leader with Scality, once again recognized in IDC’s 2018 MarketScape for Object-Based Storage. Achieve more for less: read IDC’s whitepaper on the Business Value of Scalable Object Storage for a quantified assessment of actual business value Scality RING customers have been enjoying over the past decade.

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