IBM RegTech Innovations

IBM Algo FIRST becomes IBM FIRST Risk Case Studies

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In the continued evolution of the IBM Governance Risk and Compliance (GRC) product line, I am pleased to announce that effective today, Algo FIRST (FIRST) is rebranded to IBM FIRST Risk Case Studies. Algo FIRST was acquired by IBM as part of the Algorithmics acquisition which took place in October 2011. During its time at IBM, FIRST has become closely aligned and integrated with IBM OpenPages. In particular, FIRST’s external loss event benefits can be seen in the integration to the OpenPages Operational Risk Management solution. Linking FIRST to scenarios, risks or assessments allows an institution to show real life examples of how external events have evolved and created impact for other (peer) institutions.

The rebranding was done to fully recognize FIRST’s place at IBM and in the GRC product line. Additionally, it was announced in September 2019 that the Algorithmics Financial Risk product line (where Algo FIRST originally resided) would be divested to SS&C Technologies later this year. This divestiture will not include FIRST.

What else changes with the rebranding to IBM FIRST Risk Case Studies? 

IBM FIRST Risk Case Studies continues to offer the same excellent external risk case study database that our customers have subscribed to for many years. Focused to the financial services industry, FIRST continues to provide support to those looking to:

  • Craft top 10/20 scenario lists from external events, with 27+ years and 17,000 events to choose from
  • Link cases to assessments for OpRisk, Cyber or Third-party risk to bring awareness to assessors about where risks actually reside and how they can be controlled
  • Provide support for Operational Risk Capital Modelling by providing tail event information to extrapolate trends or curves
  • Support compliance programs by showing institutions where events (risks) have resulted in regulatory fines, censure or other loss
  • Support financial crimes programs by providing intelligence on various types of fraud, AML, bribery and other kinds of loss

As part of the rebrand, we are updating the look of IBM FIRST Risk Case Studies. It will align with the color and style look for our other GRC products, OpenPages with Watson for instance.  Otherwise, it is the same external database that our customers know and value. Our research, offering and support teams remain the same.

We have said in recent blogs that “GRC is everyone’s business.” FIRST is a tool that your first, second and third lines of defense can use to help provide intelligence into your risk programs. Customers repeatedly tell us that data quality is an issue they struggle with. Through the use of content like FIRST and add-ons such as some of the Watson toolkit (Natural Language Classifier, for example), customers get help with clarity on categorization for their own data and remediation with quality issues.

In the IBM continued development of GRC tools, we look forward to continuing our collaboration with our customer base to make those meet today’s and tomorrow’s market needs.

About FIRST Risk Case Studies

FIRST Risk Case Studies is an industry leading collection of over 17,000 external operational risk events that can inform the financial services industry about frauds, cyber-exposures, trading, transactional, disaster and other operational related losses. Over twenty-seven years of events can be used to help inform your risk program and provide insights into situations which you might not have yet experienced. Available in a web and data feed subscription, this offering can be used independently or integrated into many operational or enterprise risk solutions.

Not yet a customer? Want to learn more about IBM FIRST Risk Case Studies? Please visit

Head, GRC Offering Management

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