Broker uses forensic e-mail system to meet compliance

Financial services firm Numis Securities has implemented a forensic e-mail archiving and compliance system to meet its regulatory obligations for key international legislation. These include Sarbanes Oxley in the US and the impending Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (Mifid) in Europe.

Financial services firm Numis Securities has implemented a forensic e-mail archiving and compliance system to meet its regulatory obligations for key international legislation. These include Sarbanes Oxley in the US and the impending Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (Mifid) in Europe.

The broker and investment bank, which has offices around the world, is facing ever-more demanding data management requirements, which mean it has to track and record every transaction and customer communication, and prove each is “legally watertight”.

To make this possible, the firm has migrated to a new centralised storage system and adopted Forensic & Compliance Systems’ Cryoserver forensic e-mail archiving and compliance software.

Cryoserver is installed on the network and creates an audited copy of each e-mail that goes in and out of the firm’s offices. It also provides Google-style search facilities and can quickly search e-mails and attachments for specific data.

The system also addresses the legal requirements of storing e-mails for defined periods and proving beyond doubt that essential communication has not been altered or tampered with, said Numis.

Simon Bailey, IT director at Numis, said that before adopting Cryoserver the company was relying on Microsoft Outlook as a search engine, and searches through old e-mail archives would take weeks.

“With Cryoserver, we can now run a comprehensive search and have an answer back within only two minutes. What is more, the information is forensically sealed which means we comply with all available compliance legislation,” he said.

Independent storage integrator B2net designed and implemented the storage system for Numis. It uses two NetApp 270 Filer file servers – one at the central office and the other at an offsite disaster recovery centre hosted by Sungard.

Other key components of the new infrastructure are Riverbed Technology’s wide-area services appliances, which are located in the remote offices. These boost the performance of applications across the global wide area network, giving speeds akin to a local area network.

Numis said it had already cut its IT costs by using the filers, as it does not need to replicate its IT infrastructure in each new office or employ local IT staff.

Bailey said, “Numis has grown quickly and, as an entrepreneurial company, wants the flexibility to open new offices should the market opportunity arise.

“However, we did not want to be saddled with the cost and expense of replicating the local IT infrastructure for every satellite operation we open.”

Has e-mail become more of a hindrance than a help in your business? >>

Managers’ lax e-mail use is ‘putting security at risk’ >>

Think tank highlights five keys to MiFID compliance >>

Don't underestimate Mifid IT security, warn experts >>

Numis Securities >>

Riverbed Technology >>

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