Cosmos bank malware attack: Cyber team hot on trail leading to Hong Kong

Mumbai: Two days after a malware attack of Pune-based Cosmos bank, the state cyber-cell has called for all server data of the bank. The cyber police will trace the trail of Internet Protocol (IP) addresses logged in to try and nab the hackers who siphoned off Rs 94 crore from the bank twice in the last week.

The state cyber crime wing has already started gathering information from 34 well-equipped cyber labs set up across the state. A team of 10 officers led by Brijesh Singh, special Inspector General of Police (IGP) has approached various cyber and banking experts based in Pune and Bangalore to probe the malware attack in which debit cards of bank account holders were cloned and more than 12,000 transactions were made on August 11 and 13.

As soon as payment gateways VISA and RuPay alerted the banks of siphoning of huge amounts, Cosmos Bank immediately terminated the online debit card transactions. The cyber cell team has procured data accessed from the servers and computers of the mainframe of Cosmos Bank based in Pune. However, police are yet to ascertain the number of accounts hacked into.

“We are yet to find out how many accounts have been tampered with. The number of affected account holders is yet not known. While bank authorities claim no money was withdrawn from the individual accounts, money has been siphoned out from the bank’s main account,” said Singh.

The main account is the one which has all the bank’s money, usually reserves for loans, credit card money, etc.  The police have found the trail leading to Hong Kong and police have taken measures to reach out to offshore accounts based out of there.

Balsingh Rajput, Superintendent of cyber police said, “We have roped in experts from the fields of ATMs, international banking and Society for Worldwide Interbank Telecommunications (SWIFT) facility which is used to deposit the siphoned money in any offshore account at Hong Kong.”

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