Leading stock exchange NSE today said it has successfully conducted live trading from its disaster recovery site for two consecutive days, that too when markets were scaling new peaks with high trade volumes. The development assumes significance coming within weeks of a technical glitch resulting in an over 3-hour trading halt at the NSE on July 10. “The National Stock Exchange (NSE) has successfully completed live trading from its Disaster Recovery site, on Monday, July 31, and Tuesday, August 1,” the exchange said in a statement. The NSE said the entire technology and business operations were executed from the disaster recovery setup, which is a replica of the main production site in Mumbai. The live trading was to simulate a level-4 citywide disaster when the main site is not be available. “The exercise was done when the markets were scaling new highs and have demonstrated the robustness of its disaster recovery capabilities. The entire activity was done smoothly, without affecting the market participants including members, clearing banks and depositories,” the NSE said.
It further said the live trading on these two days was followed by a successful revert of operations to the main site on August 2. On July 10, the NSE cash market segment did not function normally due to technical problem at the opening and accordingly was closed. While the F&O and currency derivative market segments opened normally, the F&O segment was also closed after giving a notice due to the problems in the cash segment. Two attempts to reopen the market were not fully successful and finally at the third attempt the market was opened at 12.30 pm in the cash and F&O segments. The currency derivative segment functioned normally. The exchange subsequently referred the matter to be examined by the internal technical team and external vendors, to analyse and identify the cause which led to the issue and to suggest solutions to prevent recurrence.
The matter was also referred to the Standing Committee on Technology, comprising public interest directors and technology experts for review of the problem and to approve measures to prevent recurrence of such glitches. While questions were asked why trading was not shifted to the BCP (Business Continuity Plan) site when the main site faced technical issues in the cash market segment, the NSE had said at that time that the BCP mechanism is normally invoked during any disaster, hardware failure, connectivity related issues. The preliminary assessment on July 10 indicated a software problem and the system was expected to be rectified quickly and shifting BCP site would have taken longer time, the NSE had said in a statement that day. The exchange had also ruled out any cyber-attack.
Later on July 28, capital markets regulator Sebi held a meeting with the CEOs and technology heads of various market infrastructure institutions including of the NSE to assess their preparedness on areas related to cyber security, technology ad system upgradations as well as BCPs. In light of the technical glitch at NSE, the exchange informed the regulator that based on internal assessment, processes were being strengthened to further reduce the response time for recovery and also adoption of automated processes. The regulator stressed on the importance of the need for sharing information on instances of technology related disruptions, cyber threats and attacks among MIIs so as to enhance their situational awareness.The exchanges were also asked to have a collaborative approach in dealing with technological challenges including cyber threats. The regulator is also undertaking a comprehensive review of the technology and systems deployed at MIIs through its Technical Advisory Committee and wants prompt and diligent reporting of any technical issues including cyber attacks.