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Second bank hit by potential cyber heist

OWON: Be they ever so mighty, SWIFT and the Zios are getting gang banged. A point not missed by China and Russia.

And now there is no doubt that they're camouflaging something.

Second bank hit by potential cyber heist

Financial Times
By Martin Arnold
12 May 2016

The main provider of money-transfer messages for banks will on Friday warn that it has learnt of a second case of the kind of cyber attack that resulted in one of the biggest ever robberies earlier this year at the Bangladesh central bank.

A spokesperson for Swift, the financial transaction system that has about 11,000 banks as customers, said the second case was found at a commercial bank, where hackers bypassed risk controls and potentially transferred money illegally.

Swift said in a statement seen by the FT and which is to be sent to all its clients on Friday that the “attackers clearly exhibit a deep and sophisticated knowledge of specific operational controls within the targeted banks — knowledge that may have been gained from malicious insiders or cyber attacks, or a combination of both”. It warned of “a wider and highly adaptive campaign targeting banks”.

The Brussels-based company urged clients to “urgently review controls in their payments environments, to all their messaging, payments and e-banking channels”. It added: “The security and integrity of our messaging services are not in question as a result of the incidents.”

Swift is a global messaging network used by banks and other financial institutions to send payment instructions and has become a vital part of the global payments architecture. The company, which processes 25m messages a day for billions of dollars’ worth of transfers, has faced doubts about its vulnerability after the raid on the Bangladesh central bank in February.

In an audacious weekend raid that sent tremors through the world’s financial and commercial banks, hackers sent 35 fake orders from Bangladesh Bank via Swift to the central bank’s account at the Federal Reserve in New York.

The transfers totalled $951m but the thieves made off with only $81m — making it still one of the world’s top 10 bank thefts, The money was sent in four batches to accounts in the Philippines.

By infecting a bank’s computers, Swift said the hackers were “able to initiate the irrevocable funds transfer process”.

It said a “Trojan PDF reader” gave the hackers access to an “icon and file description” that allowed them to “tamper with the statements and confirmations that banks would sometimes use as secondary controls, thereby delaying the victims’ ability to recognise the fraud”.

read more

And see also:

Joint Statement: Federal Reserve Bank of New York, Bangladesh Bank and SWIFT

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