New York Cybersecurity Requirements for Financial Services Companies

(23 NYCRR 500)

Summary of Exemptions 500.19 (a)(1), 500.19 (a)(2), 500.19 (a)(3)

The regulation lists several exemptions (see Section 500.19 of the regulation for the entire list), but independent producers may be most likely to qualify for one of the three listed below:

Fewer than 10 employees working in New York State

 OR

 Less than $5 million in gross annual revenue

 OR

 Less than $10 million in year-end total assets

If you qualify for one of the three exemptions listed above, then you are exempt from Sections 500.04, 500.05, 500.06, 500.08, 500.10, 500.12, 500.14, 500.15, and 500.16. You must still comply with the other sections of the regulation.

A summary of each section of the regulation is found below.

 

 500.02- Cybersecurity Program Requires that each Covered Entity maintain a cybersecurity program reasonably designed to protect the confidentiality, integrity and availability of its Information Systems.  


500.03- Cybersecurity Policy Requires each Covered Entity to implement and maintain a written cybersecurity policy addressing specified areas and also sets forth the requirements for approval of that policy.

500.04- Chief Information Security Officer

Requires that each Covered Entity designate a qualified individual responsible for overseeing and implementing the Covered Entity’s cybersecurity program (the “CISO”), and that the CISO shall develop a written report, at least annually, which shall be reviewed internally and which shall address specified cybersecurity issues.


500.05- Penetration Testing and Vulnerability Assessments Requires each Covered Entity’s cybersecurity program to include monitoring and testing, developed in accordance with the Covered Entity’s Risk Assessment, designed to assess the effectiveness of the Covered Entity’s cybersecurity program. The monitoring and testing shall include continuous monitoring or periodic Penetration Testing and vulnerability assessments. Absent effective continuous monitoring, or other systems to detect, on an ongoing basis, changes in Information Systems that may create or indicate vulnerabilities, Covered Entities shall conduct annual Penetration Testing and a bi-annual vulnerability assessment of the Covered Entity’s Information Systems, based on the Covered Entity’s Risk Assessment.


500.06- Audit Trail

Requires each Covered Entity to securely maintain systems that, based on its Risk Assessment, reconstruct material financial transactions and include audit trails designed to detect and     respond to Cybersecurity Events that have a reasonable likelihood of materially harming any material part of the normal operations of the Covered Entity.

500.07- Access Privileges

Requires that each Covered Entity shall, based on the Covered Entity’s Risk Assessment, limit user access privileges to Information Systems that provide access to Nonpublic Information and that the Covered Entity shall periodically review such privileges.


500.08- Application Security

Requires that each Covered Entity’s cybersecurity program include written procedures, guidelines and standards designed to ensure the use of secure development practices for inhouse developed applications, and procedures for evaluating, assessing or testing the security of externally developed applications utilized by the Covered Entity within the context of the Covered Entity’s technology environment, and also requires that such procedures and standards be periodically reviewed, assessed and updated.

500.09- Risk Assessment

Requires each Covered Entity to conduct a periodic Risk Assessment of the Covered Entity’s Information Systems, updated as reasonably necessary to address changes to the Covered Entity’s Information Systems, Nonpublic Information or business operations. The Risk Assessment shall allow for revision of controls to respond to technological developments and evolving threats and shall consider the particular risks of the Covered Entity’s business operations related to cybersecurity, Nonpublic Information collected or stored, Information Systems utilized and the availability and effectiveness of controls to protect Nonpublic Information and Information Systems. The Risk Assessment shall be documented and shall be carried out in accordance with written policies and procedures which shall include criteria for the evaluation and categorization of identified cybersecurity risks or threats facing the Covered Entity, criteria for assessing the confidentiality, integrity, security and availability of the Covered Entity’s Information Systems and Nonpublic Information, and requirements describing how identified risks will be mitigated or accepted, and how the cybersecurity program will address the risks.


500.10- Cybersecurity Personnel and Intelligence

Requires each Covered Entity to utilize qualified cybersecurity personnel of the Covered Entity, an Affiliate, or a Third Party Service Provider; provide such personnel with cybersecurity updates and training; and verify that key cybersecurity personnel take steps to maintain current knowledge of changing cybersecurity threats and countermeasures.

500.11- Third Party Service Provider Security Policy

Requires each Covered Entity to develop policies and procedures designed to ensure the security of Information Systems and Nonpublic Information accessible to, or held by, Third Party Service Providers. Such policies shall be based on the Covered Entity’s Risk Assessment and shall include relevant guidelines for due diligence and/or contractual protections relating to Third Party Service Providers.


500.12- Multi-Factor Authentication

Requires each Covered Entity to use effective controls to protect against unauthorized access to Nonpublic Information or Information Systems. Covered Entities are required to utilize Multi-Factor Authentication for any individual accessing the Covered Entity’s internal networks from an external network, unless the Covered Entity’s CISO has approved in writing the use of reasonably equivalent or more secure access controls.

500.13- Limitations on Data Retention

Requires each Covered Entity to have policies and procedures for the secure periodic disposal of specified categories of Nonpublic Information.


500.14- Training and Monitoring

Requires each Covered Entity to implement risk-based policies to monitor the activity of Authorized Users and detect unauthorized access or use of Nonpublic Information, and to provide regular cybersecurity awareness training for all personnel.


500.15- Encryption of Nonpublic Information

Requires each Covered Entity to implement controls, including encryption, based on the Covered Entity’s Risk Assessment, to protect Nonpublic Information held or transmitted by the Covered Entity both in transit over external networks and at rest. This section allows for the use of effective compensating controls to secure Nonpublic Information in transit over external networks and at rest if encryption of such is infeasible. Such compensating controls must be reviewed and approved by the Covered Entity’s CISO. To the extent that a Covered Entity is utilizing compensating controls, the feasibility of encryption and effectiveness of the compensating controls shall be reviewed by the CISO at least annually.


500.16- Incident Response Plan

Requires each Covered Entity to establish a written incident response plan designed to promptly respond to, and recover from, any Cybersecurity Event materially affecting the confidentiality, integrity or availability of the Covered Entity’s Information Systems or the continuing functionality of any aspect of the Covered Entity’s business or operations.

 

500.17- Notices to Superintendent

Requires each Covered Entity to annually submit to the Superintendent a written statement covering the prior calendar year by February 15, certifying that the Covered Entity is in compliance with the requirements set forth in the rule; to maintain for examination by the Department all records, schedules and data supporting the certificate for a period of five years; to notify the superintendent within 72 hours from the determination of the occurrence of a Cybersecurity Event impacting the Covered Entity of which notice is required to be provided to any government body, self-regulatory agency or any other supervisory body, or that has a reasonable likelihood of materially harming any material part of the normal operation(s) of the Covered Entity; and to document the identification of areas that require material improvement, updating or redesign, as well as planned remedial efforts.


500.18- Confidentiality

States that information provided by a Covered Entity pursuant to this Part is subject to exemptions from disclosure under the Banking Law, Insurance Law, Financial Services Law, Public Officers Law, or any other applicable state or federal law.


500.19- Exemptions

Provides that Covered Entities that have less than the specified number of employees, gross annual revenue, or year-end total assets shall be exempt from the requirements of the enumerated sections; an exemption for an employee, agent, representative or designee of a Covered Entity, who is itself a Covered Entity; an exemption from enumerated sections for a Covered Entity that does not directly or indirectly operate, maintain, utilize or control any Information Systems, and that does not, and is not required to, directly or indirectly control, own, access, generate, receive or possess Nonpublic Information; an exemption from enumerated sections for a Covered Entity under Article 70 of the Insurance Law that does not and is not required to directly or indirectly control, own, access, generate, receive or possess Nonpublic Information other than information relating to its corporate parent company (or Affiliates); a requirement that Covered Entities that qualify for an exemption file a Notice of Exemption; an exemption for Persons that do not otherwise qualify as Covered Entities and are subject to Insurance Law Section 1110, Insurance Law Section 5904, and any accredited reinsurer or certified reinsurer that has been accredited or certified pursuant to 11 NYCRR 125; and that a Covered Entity that ceases to qualify for an exemption must comply with all applicable requirements of the final rule.


500.20- Enforcement

Provides that the rule will be enforced by the superintendent pursuant to, and is not intended to limit, the superintendent’s authority under any applicable laws.


500.21- Effective Date

Provides that the rule will be effective March 1, 2017, and that Covered Entities will be required to annually prepare and submit a certification of compliance pursuant to Section 500.17 commencing February 15, 2018.


500.22- Transitional Periods

Provides that Covered Entities shall have 180 days from the effective date of the final rule to comply with its requirements, except as otherwise specified, and also includes additional transitional periods.


500.23- Severability

States that in the event a specific provision of the rule is adjudged invalid, such judgment shall not impair the validity of the remainder of the rule.