Hacker Group that Hit Bangladesh, Vietnam Banks Now Linked to Similar Attack in Ecuador

By:
Chris Gaetano
Published Date:
May 20, 2016
Cyber CrimeThe as-of-yet unknown group hacker group that pulled off daring heists in Bangladesh and Vietnam  are now linked to a third attack, this one in Ecuador, according to CNN Money.

The attack, which took place in January 2015, follows the same pattern as the other two: the hackers used malware to get around the bank's local security systems in order to gain access to the SWIFT messaging network--which major banks worldwide, including central banks, use to make international transactions with each other--so they could initiate cash transfers using fraudulent messages that look like they came from the victim bank. The targeted bank, Banco Del Austro, says it lost $12 million in the attack. 

Over 11,000 financial institutions in 200 countries use the SWIFT network to make transactions among each other, according to the SWIFT website. These attacks might indicate an overconfidence in the network, as requests are usually accepted at face value once credentials are established, according to Reuters, as once someone has legitimate codes and credentials there is no way to verify that the request is coming from the actual account holder. SWIFT said that it will be introducing a new program next week that is aimed at increasing security and preventing fraudulent transfers like the ones that have hit Bangladesh, Vietnam and Ecuador, according to the Wall Street Journal

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