Islamabad: The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) cybercrime head on Tuesday said that ‘almost all’ Pakistani banks had been hacked in the security breach, as reported by Dawn. An official of the FIA said that the data of majority of all banks in the country have been hacked. Also Read - China Pakistan Economic Corridor- Part 4- Chinese Mathematics of Debt
FIA Cyber Crimes Director (retd) Captain Mohammad Shoaib said that more than 100 cases have been registered and a probe is underway. The agency has also convened a meeting of banks’ chiefs in this regard. Also Read - China Pakistan Economic Corridor: When China Invested in Pakistan, They Did The Math
Though banks have not shared the details with the officials, the investigations being carried out by the agency has confirmed incident of data theft of ‘almost all Pakistani banks’. It is being said that the crime was conducted from outside the country. Names of the banks whose data has been compromised were not divulged by the agency. Also Read - Protesters Raise Placards of PM Modi, Other World Leaders at Pro-freedom Rally in Pakistan's Sindh
In a similar attack which took place last month in which BankIslami suffered a cyber attack that siphoned off Rs 2.6 million much to the abhorrent horror of the customers, at least six banks in Pakistan suspended the debit cards usage outside the country. The six banks stopped their facility of debit cards in overseas markets.
Again on October 29, the central bank asked commercial banks to ensure the safety of their payment cards from security breach after fraudulent overseas transactions, using BankIslami’s debit cards, was discovered. In another instance, the former chief scientist of Khan Research Laboratories, Dr. Yousuf Khilji, in an application to the Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar on Monday has claimed that someone had fraudulently withdrawn Rs 3 million from his account within 17 hours.
Bankers said cybersecurity is the biggest risk to the financial system across the world as well in Pakistan. “Banks are investing less in their cybersecurity systems,” a banker said, requesting anonymity. “They need to invest more to ensure they are resilient to cyber threats… and comply with the set of rules for coping with cyber attacks.”