The Role Of Regtech In The Incoming Aviation Overhaul

The aviation sector is about to undergo one of the most significant shake-ups in recent memory. In a report by the Washington Post, analysts outlined the new burden on provincial airports to meet the cyber security needs of the wider network. It’s a move that will require significant work from airport operators in exchange for greater assurance against external threats.

Enforcing this will require close scrutiny of what these new rules demand and a stringent regulatory framework to ensure compliance. The role of Regtech is a significant part of meeting those needs.

Continuous Monitoring

The rules at airports will have a strong component of monitoring and compliance. This is important for two main reasons.

Firstly, as these airports engage with federal aviation and the procurement process for defense vehicles, there is an obvious burden relating directly to national security; especially when considering the high-value malicious actors place on airports.

Secondly, as the TSA outlines in its summary of issues, continuous monitoring is one of the most effective ways to monitor threats rather than placing wholesale reliance on the quality of the cyber defense system.

Regtech has an important role to play here, both in ensuring that monitoring is carried out to established standards and ensuring that monitoring keeps pace with new requirements laid down by legislation. While a good IT system is essential to reflect threats, monitoring is the only way to ensure its effectiveness.

Unauthorized Access

The impact of having poor control over document clearance levels was laid open in April 2023 in the Jack Texeira case. A junior enlisted airman, Texeira had huge uninterrupted, unmonitored access to sensitive files and used that access for illicit ends.

This is a good example of how a lack of governance over secure files can sometimes lead to errors and is another key tenet the TSA is pushing as part of the cyber review. Regtech can again impact here by providing the necessary framework to review and compare security screenings.

Putting In Foundations

A key focus of aviation is reducing the use or impact of fossil fuels. To this end, a rise in the use of electric aviation is predicted, particularly by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. While explicitly for improving security today, the current new cyber rules also lay the groundwork for a future electric aviation economy.

These planes are inherently more at-risk from attack than jet fuel variants, and this will require a greater body of legislative assistance again to ensure every necessary box is ticked.

The Role Of RegTech As A Lifesaver

Few industries are higher stakes than aviation. Regtech can be a literal lifesaver. Much of the safety measures put in place by successive governments are focused not on technology but on the seemingly simple matter of compliance.

If airports and planes are regularly checked and monitored, it gives them the best possible shot at safe operation.


Lavanya Rathnam

Lavanya Rathnam is an experienced technology, finance, and compliance writer. She combines her keen understanding of regulatory frameworks and industry best practices with exemplary writing skills to communicate complex concepts of Governance, Risk, and Compliance (GRC) in clear and accessible language. Lavanya specializes in creating informative and engaging content that educates and empowers readers to make informed decisions. She also works with different companies in the Web 3.0, blockchain, fintech, and EV industries to assess their products’ compliance with evolving regulations and standards.

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