FPJ Cyber Secure: Miscreants Siphon Off Over ₹1 Cr From Bharti Sahakari Bank Using Cloned ATM Cards Of Over 400 Customers

FPJ Cyber Secure: Miscreants Siphon Off Over ₹1 Cr From Bharti Sahakari Bank Using Cloned ATM Cards Of Over 400 Customers

Astonishingly, this security breach happened almost three years ago, and the bank was unaware of the crime until recently. The attack occurred between December 17, 2020, and January 1, 2021, at various Bharti Bank ATMs across the state.

Gunwanti ParasteUpdated: Friday, July 28, 2023, 10:34 PM IST
article-image
FPJ Cyber Secure |

Pune: A city-based bank has been targeted by cybercriminals and the incident is reminiscent of a previous attack on Cosmos Bank. The Bharti Sahakari Bank in the city discovered that miscreants had cloned 439 ATM debit cards leading to the unauthorised withdrawal of a massive amount Rs. 1,08,15,700 through 1,247 transactions. Astonishingly, this security breach happened almost three years ago, and the bank was unaware of the crime until recently.

The crime was committed three years ago

The bank's Managing Director, Sarjeram Jagannath Patil, filed an official complaint with the Vishrambag Police Station after uncovering the cyber attack. It appears that the attack occurred between December 17, 2020 and January 1, 2021, at various Bharti Bank ATMs across the state.

The miscreants took advantage of the fact that the bank experienced slight delay in issuing of ATM cards with chips that are relatively safer. It is suspected that the perpetrators were well-prepared, having prior knowledge of this weakness, which enabled them to execute the crime seamlessly.

Criminals cloned cards of 439 card holders

The miscreants got the cards of 439 customers of the bank cloned in different branches and withdrew money from the ATMs at locations including Akurdi, Dhairi, Dhankawadi, Sangli, Navi Mumbai, Solapur, Kolhapur, Malkapur, Delhi, Islampur, Kothrud, Worli, Baner and Hadapsar.

Alarmingly, the bank's internal security system and the cloned card issuer failed to detect that the transactions were unauthorised which allowed the fraudulent activities to go unnoticed until a recent audit brought them to light.

Police sub-inspector Barure is actively investigating the case. The cops suspect that an employee of the bank was involved in the theft.

FPJ Cyber Secure

FPJ Cyber Secure |

Bank's statement on the issue

The bank in a statement has said, "During the Corona epidemic period from December 2020 to November 2021, an amount of Rs. 1,08,15,700/- was fraudulently obtained through 1247 ATM Transactions using 439 fake ATM cards held by customers of other banks. These transactions occurred at different branches of Bharti Sahakari Bank. Once the matter came to light, the bank promptly lodged a written complaint on June 24 2022 at the Vishrambaug police post. Subsequently, on July 27 2023, an FIR was filed by a bank official at Vishrambaug police station. The Reserve Bank of India conducted a Fraud Monitoring Report on June 29 2022, and during the annual inspection in August-2022, detailed information about the incident was provided. To cover the losses, the bank made appropriate provisions. Fortunately, no customers of Bharti Sahakari Bank suffered any financial loss in this incident. The bank conducted a thorough investigation and took suitable disciplinary action against the negligent employees involved. At the end of the financial year 2022-23, Bharti Sahakari Bank's total business amounted to Rs. 2278.30 crores, with a net NPA ratio of 1.76% and a profit of Rs. 10.67 crores. It's important to note that this incident was not a cyber attack but an embezzlement scheme where funds were unlawfully withdrawn from various ATMs of Bharti Bank using fake ATM cards obtained from customers of other banks."

RECENT STORIES

PHOTOS: Top 10 Places in Pune for Monsoon Special Dishes

PHOTOS: Top 10 Places in Pune for Monsoon Special Dishes

In Pictures: 11 Celebrated Filmmakers & Actors Who Graduated From Pune's FTII

In Pictures: 11 Celebrated Filmmakers & Actors Who Graduated From Pune's FTII

22-Year-Old Police Aspirant Dies in Road Accident Near Nashik

22-Year-Old Police Aspirant Dies in Road Accident Near Nashik

Pune Bar Case: Owners Protest Demolition Of Property, Ask 'What Is Our Mistake?'

Pune Bar Case: Owners Protest Demolition Of Property, Ask 'What Is Our Mistake?'

Nashik: Notorious Khair Smuggler 'Pushpa' Nabbed by Forest Development Corporation

Nashik: Notorious Khair Smuggler 'Pushpa' Nabbed by Forest Development Corporation