Quantum Dawn Two. No, it’s not the next Keanu Reeves surfer movie. It's a fire drill for big banks to test their defenses against hackers.
Quantum Dawn Two. No, it’s not the next Keanu Reeves surfer movie. It's a fire drill for big banks to test their defenses against hackers. - 
Listen To The Story
Marketplace

Quantum Dawn 2. No, it’s not the next James Bond movie. It's a fire drill for big banks to test their defenses against hackers. Some 50 organizations will participate, from the Treasury and the Department of Homeland Security, to Bank of America and Citigroup.

Think blinking laptop screens and some code -- all designed to start trouble. But Nish Bhalla, founder and CEO of Security Compass, says that trouble could mean many different things. The key is creating chaos for the systems and the people who fight hackers.

"If I'm trying to create chaos, I don't care about getting access to the data," Bhalla says. "But I could totally lock out every username possible in the online banking application."

Once online users can't get into their accounts, you can imagine how the dominoes fall. The software company Symantec says cyber-attacks against businesses in the U.S. grew 42 percent last year, which is one reason why regulators are emphasizing the importance of the drill.

As a nonprofit news organization, Marketplace is on a mission that drives what we do every day: to increase economic intelligence across the country. But we can’t do it alone. Become a Marketplace Investor today, in whatever amount you choose, and your donation will go twice as far, thanks to a dollar-for-dollar match from The Kendeda Fund.

Become a Marketplace Investor today – in whatever amount is right for you – and keep public service journalism strong. We’re grateful for your support.

Follow Ben Johnson at @@TheBrockJohnson