Magazine article Security Management

When the Web Links to Problems. (Tech Talk)

Magazine article Security Management

When the Web Links to Problems. (Tech Talk)

Article excerpt

Web linking--the technology that leads a person viewing a Web site to a new page or even a different Web site after clicking on a particular word or image--is what makes the Internet so useful. But this same technology can cause trouble for businesses that don't watch where they link.

Financial institutions in particular are at risk from Web linking, according to a new interagency guidance paper by the Office of Thrift Supervision, a U.S. Treasury bureau that regulates the nation's thrift institutions, such as savings banks. The two most significant dangers are risk to reputation and to compliance.

The first issue can arise "when a linked third party adversely affects the financial institution's customer and, in turn, the financial institution, because the customer blames the financial institution" for any problems. This situation may occur when customers believe that the institution provides a product or service actually offered by a third-party provider; in some cases, the use of frames on a Web page make it appear as though the third party's Web site is operated by the financial institution within whose frame the new site appears.

The second situation occurs when "the third party acts in a manner that does not conform to regulatory requirements. …

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