US, Israel sign deal to combat ransomware, protect critical financial infrastructure
The U.S. Deputy Secretary of the Treasury and Israel’s Finance Minister agreed to set up a task force to support fintech innovation and cybersecurity last year and the new partnership will see the parties conduct a bilateral exercise later this year
The Israeli Ministry of Finance and the U.S. Department of the Treasury signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Tuesday to establish a bilateral partnership to protect critical financial infrastructure and emerging technologies and expand international cooperation to counter the threat ransomware poses to countries and the global economy. This expanded cooperation, initially announced last November following a meeting between Deputy Secretary of the Treasury Wally Adeyemo, Finance Minister Avigdor Lieberman, and Director General of the National Cyber Directorate Yigal Unna, will occur under the auspices of a broader U.S.-Israeli Task Force on Fintech Innovation and Cybersecurity.
The announcement followed the Counter-Ransomware Initiative meeting held virtually at the White House last October with the European Union and more than 30 countries, including Israel.
The MoU supports (1) permissible information sharing related to the financial sector, including cybersecurity regulations and guidance, cybersecurity incidents, and cybersecurity threat intelligence; (2) staff training and study visits to promote cooperation in the area of cybersecurity and the financial system; and, (3) competency-building activities such as the conduct of cross-border cybersecurity exercises linked to global financial institutions financial and investment flows.
In addition, The Task Force will launch a series of expert technical exchanges on policy, regulation, and outreach to support fintech innovation that features robust cybersecurity protections and that can advance compliance with international standards on anti-money laundering, counter-terrorist financing, and countering the financing of proliferation.