Is your wealth manager a target for a cyberattack? CNBC

Virtual scams on the rise

The financial cost of a cyberattack can be stunning and can decimate an investor's portfolio. 

A current hot-button issue related to cybersecurity in the financial advising industry is wire fraud, said Michael Kitces, a certified financial planner and director of financial planning for Pinnacle Advisory Group. 

Cyber thieves are contacting advisors, pretending to be clients on vacation, claiming they've been robbed and requesting a wire transfer immediately, he said. Fraudsters are hacking into clients' personal emails and looking through their Sent files to gain financial information, and contacting the advisors with phony requests. 

"This problem has been ramping up more and more," he said. "This type of fraud is designed to put the advisor in a high-stakes situation — How do you refuse a request from a client in need? As a result, advisors are saying, 'If you ever need a wire transfer, I will call you to confirm.'" 

Other big cyberhacking vulnerabilities include downloading files, sharing computers and using mobile devices.  MORE

Mark Brown