A CIO's work is never done


You'd think that in a speech of more than 6,000 words, President Barack Obama would not have left out anything of importance. But in his laundry list of new initiatives on Tuesday night, the commander-in-chief did not utter the words "Dodd-Frank."

Why the lack of love for one of the president's most important initiatives?

The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 may have been the most wide-sweeping regulatory reform since the Glass-Steagal Act of 1933, but it was barely even alluded to in the State of the Union address. Although the president did say "Together, we have cleared away the rubble of crisis, and can say with renewed confidence that the state of our union is stronger," that was as close as he came to mentioning the crisis of 2008. One commentator noted that the only use of the term 'bank' was in relation to food banks that feed to the poor and unemployed.

The president also failed to mention Big Data or the apparent dangers of high-frequency trading.

Do these omissions mean that all is forgiven on Wall Street? Can the IT teams now relax and ease off on their regulatory compliance projects? Hardly.

Investment firms still need to get their data in order to achieve the transparency that regulators require. Clients are demanding mobile apps that are reliable and speedy. Risk must be accurately measured because no one thinks that a major bank or investment firm will be bailed out again after the embarrassing collapses of 2008. And if you can't stop hackers with stolen debit cards, how can you keep keep agents from foreign governments from disrupting your trading and banking operations?

Oh, and you had better brace for the next rogue algo.

In other words, a CIO's work is never done. -Phil