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IBM launches industry-specific cloud solutions for financial services

IBM Philippines’ Lope Doromal said in a one-on-one interview with Back End News that “industry-focused cloud” is one of the emerging patterns the company sees moving forward companies’ digital transformation. So, this month, IBM officially made its IBM Cloud for Financial Services generally available after a collaboration with the Bank of America.

IBM Cloud for Financial Services now includes the support for Red Hat OpenShift and other cloud-native services. OpenShift is a family of containerization software products developed by Red Hat and its flagship product is the OpenShift Container Platform, an on-premises platform as a service (PaaS).

While it is not really “customized,” the cloud environment is designed to support the requirements of the financial industry for mission-critical workload and data protection. It also aims to help reduce the risks for financial institutions and their partners and fintech.

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Central to the platform is the IBM Cloud Framework for Financial Services which delivers an industry-informed set of security and compliance controls to operate securely with bank-sensitive data in the public cloud. This was developed with Bank of America and Promontory, a global leader in financial services regulatory compliance consulting and will continue to be maintained by IBM’s Financial Services Cloud Council, led by Howard Boville, Head of IBM Hybrid Cloud Platform.

To ensure that it meets governments’ regulatory requirements, IBM is also working with several global financial institutions such as BNP Paribas, Luminor Bank, MUFG, among others. The IBM Cloud for Financial Services is supported by an ecosystem of more than 90 collaboration partners including new additions EY and Tata Consultancy Services, Independent Software Vendors (ISVs), and Software as a Service (SaaS) providers. Software analytics firm SAP has joined the IBM Cloud for Financial Services ecosystem, giving clients a diverse set of applications to deploy via the platform.

Open innovation

IBM wants to help technology partners in building their own applications through Red Hat OpenShift as a primary Kubernetes environment. FIs can easily migrate virtual machine workloads and establish compliance profiles across their workloads. Using the open platform will help companies to manage containerized software across the enterprise, and includes more than 200 API-driven, cloud-native PaaS solutions to create new and enhanced cloud-native apps. Developer and ecosystem partners can build and modernize in a secured environment to drive innovation for today’s modern customers.

“We invested into a framework of mapping controls and compliance into a platform that our customers can adopt while adhering to regulatory requirements within their country,” said Ashish Malhotra, associate partner, IBM Security Consulting and System Integration, during the ASEAN virtual media briefing. “Cloud for financial services is actually a security and compliance center you can manage yourself.”

IBM Cloud for Financial Services ecosystem

Aside from making it available in an open platform, IBM also brings in independent software vendors (ISV) and Software-as-a-Service (Saas) providers to further explore the possibilities. FIs can seamlessly offerings from third-party providers and modernize core applications to improve the customer experience.

IBM will guide ISV and SaaS providers through each step of the onboarding process, which includes a technical and security assessment, workload migration, and readiness validation designed to address third- and fourth-party risk. The IBM Cloud for Financial Services features a control framework designed to help financial institutions reduce expenses and accelerate revenue growth while fostering a secure and compliant partner ecosystem.

This process supports partner compliance initiatives with the IBM Cloud Framework for Financial Services requirements and efficient onboarding through a systematic approach supported by IBM’s technical, security, and regulatory teams. For more information, visit here.

IBM Cloud for Financial Services clients can soon access on-demand training and certification programs via the IBM Center for Cloud Training. The program, available later this month, will introduce IBM Cloud for Financial Services core concepts, key components, and real-world applications, as well as solution architectures.