Money & Banking

2018 Malware Attack: Cosmos bank recovers ₹5.73 crore from frozen account of Hong Kong-based bank

| Updated on February 18, 2020 Published on February 18, 2020

Our Bureau

Pune, February 18

Cosmos bank recovered ₹5.73 crore from Hong Kong-based Hang Seng Bank on Monday according to Pune police. The amount is part of ₹94.42 crore that was siphoned off by hackers from the Pune based Cosmos Bank in August 2018.

Pune police officials told media that they were expecting to recover ₹10 crore from the Hong Kong Bank. Hackers had transferred ₹13.92 crore in this bank account and further, they siphoned off ₹3 crore from the account before police intervened requesting a Hong Kong court to freeze it. The police had also asked Cosmos Bank officials to file a civil suit against the Hang Seng Bank. Pune Police along with their counterparts in Hong Kong followed up on the matter and court hearings have started.

Fraudulent withdrawals

In August 2018, Cosmos Co-operative Bank reported fraudulent withdrawals amounting to ₹94.42 crore due to cyber attacks, including malware attacks, on its debit card payment system and SWIFT transaction system. About ₹78 crore was withdrawn through various ATMs located across 28 countries, which included 12,000 VISA card transactions.

In the same way, about ₹2.50 crore was withdrawn through 2,800 debit card transactions in India at various locations. ₹13.9 crore was transferred through SWIFT (Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication) transactions. The bank came to know about the malware attack on its debit card payment system on August 11. It observed that unusual repeated transactions were taking place through ATM VISA and RuPay cards for nearly two hours.

Pune police jumped into the action after Bank officials registered the complaint. A case under section 120(b), 420, 467, 468, 471 and 43 of the Indian Penal Code was registered. The case was then transferred to the cyber crime branch. To date, 18 people have been arrested across the States in India and the police has seized ₹10 lakh from them. Pune Police is investigating the matter further.

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Published on February 18, 2020
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