JPMorgan’s Jamie Dimon is greatly concerned about the threat of cybersecurity.

In fact, in his annual letter to investors, he unveiled his firm spends up to $600 million a year just to protect itself from cyber threats.

He went on to highlight that it’s the “biggest threat” to the financial services industry.  

However, the interconnected nature of the financial system means that threat never goes away.  

It’s why the firm spends “a lot of time and effort trying to protect our company in different ways as part of the ordinary course of running the business,” Dimon noted.  “But the financial system is interconnected, and adversaries are smart and relentless – so, we must continue to be vigilant.”

JPMorgan Hints that Improvements are Coming

The good news – CEO Jamie Dimon hints that improvements are coming.

In his letter to investors, he notes the good news is that the banking industry and the U.S. government are “increasingly being mobilized to combat this threat.”

Along the way, the firm is creating new products to make it easier for customers to know where their personal data is actually sent, as well as how they can change or restrict that information.  In Europe, for example, new laws stipulate that consumers should have access to what data companies have on file about them, and how they can correct or delete such information.

The Reality of Global Cyberattacks

Our digital over-dependence of the Internet means that our risk is greater than ever before with new attacks surfacing all the time.  

While many of us don’t want to believe we could ever be hacked, it’s already happened.

It’s cost U.S. businesses billions of dollars.  Consumers have had their most private data exposed for the world to see.  Credit cards, social security numbers, bank account information, even your child’s information in the hands of strangers.

Damages related to cybercrimes are expected to hit $6 trillion a year by 2021.

Unfortunately, despite the scale and potential harm of such attacks, many companies and government agencies are still not prepared.

Worse, Microsoft predicts that by 2020 data volumes online will be 50 times greater than what they are today with 111 billion lines of new software code produced each year, including billions of potential vulnerabilities that can be exploited, according to Cybersecurity Ventures.

JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon is right to fear the threat.  

Unfortunately, it spreads far beyond just the financial services space.