April 02, 2016

"Many Sri Lankan banks are beefing up monitoring and surveillance mechanisms following February’s near US$ 100 million hack-in heist involving banks in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh and the US Federal Reserve, officials said."

The Sunday Times: "As soon as we heard about this (heist) we reviewed our Know Your Customer (KYC) mechanisms and other surveillance according to the SWIFT’s security recommendations." By Duruthu Edirimuni Chandrasekera

'"We found that we’re in line with it," Jegan Durairatnam, CEO Commercial Bank (Commercial) told the Business Times. SWIFT is a messaging/payment service used by more than 11,000 financial institutions in more than 200 countries. Mr. Durairatnam added that the staff was briefed to be more vigilant when scrutinising foreign transactions.

'Chinese hackers breached the computer systems of Bangladesh Bank in early February and attempted to steal US$951 million from its account at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, which it uses for international settlements. An attempted transfer $20 million in Sri Lanka through the Pan Asia Bank to Shalika Foundation run by businesswoman, Hagoda Gamage Shalika Perera was blocked, but $81 million was transferred to accounts in the Philippines in one of the biggest cyber heists in history. This shook up the entire banking sector in terms of handling cyber/digital transactions, a top HNB official said. Mr. Durairatnam also said that Commercial is re-evaluating how they handle their digital mode transactions and customer requests.'

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