Using Donald Rumsfeld’s famous quote “There are known knowns. These are things we know that we know. There are known unknowns. That is to say, there are things that we know we don't know. But there are also unknown unknowns. There are things we don't know we don't know.”
In risk, “Known knowns” represent incidents that we experience within our own organisations. We are therefore well aware of them and can learn from the mistake to improve processes and get stronger. “Known Unknowns” represent incidents that other organisations have experienced. These are not well known outside of the affected organisation as often the knowledge is not broadcast, not least for confidentiality and potential reputation impacts. However, these are the best incidents for us to learn from as we have not suffered any loss ourselves but can strengthen our processes from the knowledge of what happened.
Serious value by way of knowledge sharing and learning from others can be realised if the sharing of these incidents among peers can be achieved. In the global banking industry, the major banks already do this primarily using two shared sources being:
There is a substantial cost and stringent membership requirements to subscribe to these databases which may make them unavailable and / or expensive for other industries and organisations.
Protecht’s Risk Incident Database
In order to address this gap, Protecht has launched its low cost “Protecht.RID” service (RID = Risk Incident Database). It is a shared service which enables subscribers to enter and share:
The service ensures anonymity of each subscriber and their entries while allowing anonymous “blog” communication between participants based on any incident or article that is posted.
At present, we have launched it across the Mutual ADI (Building Societies, Mutual Banks and Credit Unions) in Australia.
The success of this knowledge sharing initiative depends on the number of subscribers and the level of sharing. We are looking for:
If this interests you, please email email@example.com or phone +61 2 8003 7079 for a chat and to obtain more information.
Author of 'A Short Guide to Operational Risk', David Tattam is an internationally recognised specialist in all facets of risk management, particularly at the enterprise level. His career includes many years working with PwC, as well as two Australian banks. His achievements include the creation of the Middle Office (Risk Management Department) for The Industrial Bank of Japan in Australia and the complete implementation of all Australian operations, systems, procedures and controls for Westdeutsche Landesbank (WestLB).
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