ISACA Provides Guidance Around EU’s Proposed Digital Operational Resilience Act

New publication helps the financial industry prepare ahead of DORA’s final version expected within 18-24 months

SCHAUMBURG, Ill.--()--Reforms following the 2008 financial crisis helped strengthen the resilience of the financial sector, but did not fully address digital operational resilience. The European Union’s recently released Digital Operational Resilience Act (DORA) draft is designed to provide digital operational resilience rules for EU financial institutions, and ISACA provides guidance on this proposal in its new white paper, Digital Operational Resilience in the EU Financial Sector: A Risk-Based Approach.

When finalized, DORA will enact rules for financial services system operators like investment firms, credit institutions, trading venues and electronic money institutions to ensure these systems’ stability and resilience to cyber incidents. Digital Operational Resilience in the EU Financial Sector outlines the objectives and legal basis for DORA, as well as its information and communication technology (ICT) requirements around risk management, information and cybersecurity, incident reporting, testing, and oversight of third-party service providers, some of which include:

  • Set up and maintain resilient ICT systems and tools that minimize the impact of ICT risk.
  • Have an ICT risk-management framework that includes strategies, policies, procedures, ICT protocols and tools necessary to effectively protect all relevant physical components and infrastructures from risk, such as damage and unauthorized access or usage.
  • Test the ICT business continuity policy and the ICT disaster recovery plan at least yearly, and after substantive changes to the ICT systems.
  • Include relevant provisions on accessibility, availability, integrity, security and protection of personal data, and guarantees for access, recover and return in the case of failures of the ICT third-party service providers in contracts that govern the relationship with third-party providers.

“The requirements laid out in DORA to identify all sources of ICT risk on a continuous basis and mandate an annual review of ICT risk management frameworks and review after a major incident, audit or testing are a step in the right direction,” says Chris Dimitriadis, ISACA chief global strategy officer. “However, to further strengthen the act, ISACA encourages provisions ensuring that ICT risk management plans go beyond being a compliance exercise by embedding governance responsibility within the management body, as well as requiring continuous training and ICT awareness of senior management and staff and independent testing performed by testers who are certified.”

During this period in which the DORA regulation is under consideration in the European Parliament and Council of the EU, ISACA’s EU Task Force is engaging with policy makers and sharing feedback. The final version of the regulation is expected in an estimated 18-24 months.

“ISACA is recognized among policy makers as an independent source of expertise on cybersecurity issues. The variety of backgrounds and experience of our members, reflected in the EU Task Force, have been welcomed by policy makers who have valued our contributions to the debate,” says Emily Bastedo, ISACA director for global government relations and public affairs.

To download a complimentary copy of Digital Operational Resilience in the EU Financial Sector, visit Additional publications that may be helpful for financial entities as they prepare for DORA include ISACA’s Risk IT Framework, 2nd Edition; Risk IT Practitioner Guide, 2nd Edition; and IT Risk Fundamentals Study Guide. Other IT risk-related resources can be found at


For more than 50 years, ISACA® ( has advanced the best talent, expertise and learning in technology. ISACA equips individuals with knowledge, credentials, education and community to progress their careers and transform their organizations, and enables enterprises to train and build quality teams. ISACA is a global professional association and learning organization that leverages the expertise of its more than 150,000 members who work in information security, governance, assurance, risk and privacy to drive innovation through technology. It has a presence in 188 countries, including more than 220 chapters worldwide. In 2020, ISACA launched One In Tech, a philanthropic foundation that supports IT education and career pathways for under-resourced, under-represented populations.



Emily Van Camp,, +1.847.385.7223
Kristen Kessinger,, +1.847.660.5512


Emily Van Camp,, +1.847.385.7223
Kristen Kessinger,, +1.847.660.5512