City Union Bank, the Indian bank, disclosed this past weekend that it was hacked — with bad guys transferring close to $2 million.
According to a report in Reuters, the close to $2 million was the result of three unauthorized remittances to lenders. The transfers happened via SWIFT, noted Reuters. City Union Bank was prompted to issue a statement after a small, private lender in India said it found three fraudulent remittances that were sent to banks in Dubai, Turkey and China.
In a phone interview with Reuters, Chief Executive Officer N. Kamakodi called it a “conspiracy” that involved several countries and said that the bank was investigating how this happened. “This is basically a cyberattack by international cybercriminals,” he said, noting that “so far [there is] no evidence of any internal staff involvement. We are very clear now the account holders are part of this conspiracy.”
City Union Bank said that it was able to block one of the remittances, which was worth $500,000. That remittance was sent via Standard Chartered Bank in New York to a lender based in Dubai, noted the report. The second transfer of $372,150 was sent through Standard Chartered Bank in Frankfurt to a Turkish account. The Turkish lender blocked the transfer from being finalized. The third, worth $1 million, was sent via a Bank of America account in New York to a China-based bank. Kamakodi said the bank is working with authorities in India, noted Reuters.
The disclosure on the part of City Union Bank comes just days after Punjab National Bank announced it was the victim of a loan scheme in which fake loans were steered toward businesses linked to Nirav Modi, the billionaire jeweler in India. Reuters reported that since March of 2017, banks have given loans and guarantees valued at $2.74 billion to the companies tied to Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi, who operates a jewelry retailer.