IV.B     Communications

Management should consider, plan for, and prepare multiple mechanisms to communicate with others. For example, when traditional voice communications and telecommunications are impaired or inoperable, management may consider alternative communications systems such as text messaging through employer-provided and personal mobile phones, personal email, and instant messaging. Other common solutions include an inbound hotline number, an informational webpage, or a two-way polling phone system. Regardless of the communication device used, appropriate controls to safeguard customer and other sensitive information should be maintained.

BCM should include communication protocols and contact lists to notify stakeholders. Management should consider the content and process for developing such protocols and templates. Communication protocols should incorporate strategic communications and crisis management approaches in concert with public affairs or external communications (e.g., prepared public/press statements, media response plans, managing social media, etc.). Communication protocols provide customers, third-party service providers, and other external groups a means to communicate when normal channels are inoperable. External groups could include the following:

  • Regulatory agencies (federal and states).
  • Emergency responders.
  • Law enforcement.
  • Financial sector trade associations.
  • Customers, third-party service providers, and other third parties (e.g., counterparties, clearing and settlement partners, payment system operators).
  • Information-sharing entities (e.g., FS-ISAC).

 

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V Business Continuity Plan