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War games organised to safeguard cash

The Financial Services Authority (FSA) is working alongside 87 major London firms to theorise on possible disruptions caused by transportation gridlock or technical difficulties on payment systems.

According to The Guardian, a series of 'war games' were organised to begin at 08:00 on Tuesday (November 22nd), giving companies in the city the chance to test their cash management strategies and recovery models.

A spokesperson for the FSA stressed that the evaluations are not about passing or failing an organisation; they are simply a chance for businesses to identify areas for improvement.

"The market-wide exercise is carried out to assess and improve the resilience of the financial services sector, during a major operational disruption and is an important part of planning for major disruptions," they added.

Among the situations under the microscope were the possibility of cash machines running out of cash and pin numbers failing to work.

Writing for eWeek Europe, Iris Cheerin suggested the increased possibility of cyber attacks has been a major factor in the organisation of the war games, with firms keen to avoid major problems during next year's Olympic Games in London.

She pointed out that previous simulations led by the FSA have included fake floods in 2009 and a hypothetical six-week flu epidemic in 2006.

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