SBP Denies Claims of Data Theft From ‘Almost All’ Pakistani Banks


SBP Denies Claims of Data Theft From ‘Almost All’ Pakistani Banks Made By the FIA

As Pakistan gets wrapped in the middle of cyber attacks, the State Bank of Pakistan denies Federal Investigation Agency’s claims of data breach in “almost all Pakistani banks”.

On Tuesday, the FIA cyber-crime chief set off the warning alarm and warned both banks and customers of the potential threat due to recent security breach. A recent report from a global cyber security firm, Group-IB, claimed that a new dump of Pakistani debit and credit cards have been posted on the dark web forums by hackers.

However, the State Bank denied the FIA’s official statement and said “no evidence that banks’ data had been breached, except for one” and that bank being Bank Islami.

“We would like to emphasize that except for the incident of October 27th, 2018 in which reportedly the IT security of one bank was compromised, no breach has been reported,” the SBP reported.

“Nevertheless, SBP has already instructed all banks to take steps to identify and counter any cyber threat to their systems in coordination with international payment schemes,” SBP added.

“Representatives of payment schemes have also assured that all steps are being taken to help banks in identifying any cyber threat on card systems and have offered additional controls to them,” the statement further wrote.

Earlier last week, a cyber-attack on Bank Islami wiped off around Rs 2.6 million its accounts, some of which has now been recovered by the bank. Additionally, at the end of last week, at least six Pakistani banks had blocked all international transactions from the debit cards of its customers.

After the breach, the State Bank had summoned the representatives of every bank to discuss further measures of battling the cyber-attacks. And also putting further precautionary steps.

“SBP is engaged with the international payment schemes, payment operators and banks to monitor the current situation continuously to ensure security of the banking system,” the central bank wrote.

Cyber security experts have claimed that over 19,000 debit cards from 22 Pakistani banks have been hacked or stolen in the recent cyber theft. This recent breach was Pakistan’s biggest cyber-attack in history.

Bank Islami, which was the victim of the cyber attack, had released a press statement on October 28, and issued its own security instructions for its customers. The bank revealed that the compromised cards were withdrawn until empty from different countries including USA and Russia.

Earlier on Wednesday, Summit Bank issued a statement for its customers and reassured the security of their data through the enhanced security system of the bank.


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