HACKERS ALLEGEDLY siphoned off Rs 97 lakh from the Mogaveera Co-operative Bank in Andheri West last week after gaining access to the login credentials of an employee, said police. The money was allegedly transferred using RTGS and NEFT to several bank accounts registered in New Delhi and Rajasthan. The breach came to light last week after bank authorities noticed unusual transactions being made from the bank’s ledger account.
Kishore Amin, the bank’s assistant general manager, said Rs 97.16 lakh was siphoned off from the ledger account in six to seven transactions after someone hacked into the bank’s central servers in Andheri West and compromised its general ledger. “We stopped one transaction from going through and informed the police,” he added. A complaint was registered at Amboli police station on September 29.
Amin said the bank is attempting to understand how its system was compromised. “This is one of those things you read about and hope never happens to you. We were not prepared for such a thing.”
Police said unknown individuals got access to the login details of a bank employee authorised to approve transactions. “Using the user ID and password, the hackers were able to carry out the illegal transactions from the general ledger, which is the bank’s own money, without anyone being alerted,” said an officer at Amboli police station.
The money, police said, was debited to accounts registered in the name of business organisations in New Delhi and Rajasthan. “None of the accounts are held by individuals. All are in the name of enterprises,” the officer said.
Amin said the addresses mentioned in the bank accounts have been found to be incorrect. The part of the money which has not been withdrawn, was frozen after he contacted the concerned banks, he added.
“The banks where the concerned accounts are held should have been vigilant about suspicious transactions being made to accounts that have very little money and no history of large transactions,” Amin said. Since last week, the bank has introduced an extra layer of security in its transactions, he added.
The bank, headquartered on Veera Desai Road, was founded in 1946 by Vaikutnthlal Mehta, then finance minister of Bombay State and a pioneer of the co-operative banks movements in the country. As of the 2017-18 financial year, the bank has 47,543 members and closed with a general ledger of Rs. 1.61 crore, its annual report stated.