This page provides AWS financial institution customers with information about the legal and regulatory requirements in Germany that may apply to their use of AWS services.
Can financial institutions use AWS?
Yes. Financial institutions in Germany are permitted to use cloud services, provided that they comply with applicable legal and regulatory requirements, such as those described below.
Who is the financial regulator?
The Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (Bundesanstalt für Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht) (“BaFin”) and the Deutsche Bundesbank (“Bundesbank”) are Germany’s financial supervisory authorities. BaFin supervise banks and other financial service providers, insurance undertakings and pension funds, stock exchanges, asset management companies and investment funds and securities and other investment companies. The Bundesbank undertakes the on-going supervisions of banks and financial service providers. Certain financial service providers (significant institutes) may be regulated by the European Central Bank.
What regulations apply to financial institutions using AWS?
German regulated entities may be subject to a number of different legal and regulatory requirements when they use cloud services.
The German Banking Act (Kreditwesengesetz) (“KWG”) applies to licensed banking and financial services institutions. The requirements on risk management set forth in KWG are further specified in two BaFin circulars: the Minimum Requirements for Risk Management (Mindestanforderungen an das Risikomanagement – “MaRisk”) and the Banking Supervisory Requirements for IT (Bankaufsichtliche Anforderungen an die IT – “BAIT”).
The German Act on Supervision Insurance Undertakings (Versicherungsaufsichtsgesetz) (“VAG”) applies to insurance undertakings. The requirements for risk management are similar to the requirements for banking and financial services institutions and are also further specified in two BaFin circulars: the Minimum Requirements on Business Organisation of Insurance Companies (Mindesantforderungen an die Geschäftsorganisation von Versicherungsunternehmen, "MaGo") and the Insurance Undertaking Requirements for IT (Versicherungsaufsichtliche Anforderungen an die IT – “VAIT”).
The MaRisk or the MaGo respectively contains requirements regarding responsibility for risk management, insurance of continuity and quality of outsourced activities, cooperation with regulators and audit rights, data management, data security and confidentiality.
The BAIT or the VAIT respectively, in part, further specifies the MaRisk or the MaGo respectively. It sets forth requirements on technical and organizational measures for IT systems, in particular regarding security and contingency plans.
There are other relevant EU and German laws and regulations in addition to MaRisk and BAIT that pertain to financial entities’ use of cloud services.
Customers that have questions about the MaRisk and BAIT or MaGo and VAIT or and how these may apply to their use of AWS services, or regarding any local regulations, guidelines and laws that might apply in this context, can reach out to their account representative or contact us.
Regulations are changing rapidly in this space, and AWS is working to help customers proactively respond to new rules and guidelines. AWS encourages its regulated customers to obtain appropriate advice on their compliance with all regulatory and legal requirements that are relevant to their business, including the MaRisk, BAIT, MaGo or VAIT and other local regulations, guidelines and laws.
Key considerations for financial institutions using AWS
AWS is committed to offering customers a strong compliance framework and advanced tools and security measures that customers can use to evaluate meet, and demonstrate compliance with applicable legal and regulatory requirements.
Financial institutions who are using or planning to use AWS services can take the following steps to better understand their compliance needs:
1. Consider the purpose of the workload(s) under consideration and the relevant categories of data in order to anticipate which legal and regulatory requirements may apply.
2. Assess the materiality or criticality of the relevant workload(s) in light of local requirements. For example, see the materiality assessment considerations in Section AT 9.2 of the MaRisk or the risk assessment in accordance with item 247 of the MaGo.
3. Review the AWS Shared Responsibility Model and map AWS responsibilities and customer responsibilities according to each AWS service that will be used. Customers can also use AWS Artifact to access AWS’ audit reports and conduct their assessment of the control responsibilities.
4. Customers who have further questions about how AWS services can enable their security and compliance needs, or who would like more information, can contact their account representative or contact us.
Key data privacy and protection considerations for financial institutions using AWS
Financial institutions in Germany using AWS services should also consider applicable privacy requirements, including the General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”) and the German Federal Data Protection Act.
If customers process or are planning to process the personal data of data subjects in the European Union (EU), they should visit AWS’ General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Center. More information on these requirements are included in the AWS whitepaper, Navigating GDPR Compliance on AWS.
Navigating GDPR Compliance on AWS
This document is intended to answer questions such as, ‘How AWS supports customers to become compliant with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).’ Amazon Web Services (AWS) provides customers with services and resources to help them comply with GDPR requirements that may be applicable to their operations. These include AWS’ adherence to the Cloud Infrastructure Services Providers in Europe (CISPE) Code of Conduct, granular data access controls, monitoring and logging tools, encryption, key management, audit capability, adherence to IT security standards and AWS’ Cloud Computing Compliance Controls Catalog (C5) attestations.
The goal of the Code is to eliminate barriers to cloud usage by certifying cloud infrastructure or hosting services as compliant with the European data protection regulation, including the GDPR law.
This guide provides customers with sufficient information to be able to plan for and document the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) compliance of their AWS workloads. This includes the selection of controls that meet specific PCI DSS 3.2.1 requirements, planning of evidence gathering to meet assessment testing procedures, and explaining their control implementation to their PCI Qualified Security Assessor (QSA).
This document provides information to assist customers who want to use AWS to store or process content containing personal data, in the context of common privacy and data protection considerations. It will help customers understand the way AWS services operate, including how customers can address security and encrypt their content. The geographic locations where customers can choose to store content and other relevant considerations. The respective roles the customer and AWS each play in managing and securing content stored on AWS services.
AWS has many compliance-enabling features that you can use for your regulated workloads in the AWS cloud. These features allow you to achieve a higher level of security at scale. Cloud-based compliance offers a lower cost of entry, easier operations, and improved agility by providing more oversight, security control, and central automation.
The purpose of this paper is to describe how AWS and our customers in the financial services industry achieve operational resilience using AWS services.
This paper provides insight into classification schemes for public and private organizations to leverage when moving data to the cloud. It identifies practices and models currently implemented by global first movers and early adopters, examines how implementation of these schemes can simplify cloud adoption, and recommends practices to harmonize national requirements to internationally recognized standards and frameworks.
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Guidelines for systematically reviewing and monitoring your AWS resources for security best practices.
PCI DSS Level 1