Hackers transferred Rs 12 90 crore from Mahesh Bank to 128 accounts

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Hyderabad, Jan 25

 Cyber crooks, who hacked the server of Andhra Pradesh Mahesh Co-Operative Urban Bank here on Sunday, transferred Rs 12.90 crore to three accounts in the same bank and from there, to 128 accounts in different banks in various parts of the country, a bank official said on Tuesday.

The bank's IT head K. Badrinath also said the customers' deposits and data are safe as the hackers transferred the money from the bank's remittance funds.

He claimed that immediately after noticing the hacking, Mahesh Bank officials succeeded in stopping further transfers. "We also immediately alerted the banks where the money was transferred and requested them to put the transfers on hold," he said.

The bank has lodged a complaint with the Cybercrime police station. The police launched an investigation and have reportedly seized three accounts in two branches of Mahesh Bank in Hyderabad where the hackers initially transferred the money.

The bank official denied that their cyber security system was weak and pointed out that immediately after noticing the cyber attack, they could check further damage.

"We have the best of appliances and best of procedures. This is the first time a cyber fraud has happened. We have hired experts to find out how they hacked the server," he said.

The server was hacked on Sunday. The payment channels of banks work 24×7 and even on holidays and the officials concerned keep monitoring them. "We reconciled the accounts on Sunday and noticed the abnormality. We halted it within hours and traced how the money was routed," he said.

The bank has shared the details of the accounts and banks with the investigating officials. Badrinath said since the bank has insurance against cyber frauds, the funds were safe.

Meanwhile, Central Crime Station (CCS) police have intensified the probe into the hacking of Mahesh Bank's server. The investigating officials were trying to ascertain how the hackers could break into the bank's server.

The account holders of three accounts in Mahesh Bank's two branches in the city were reportedly being questioned about the fraud. The police were also probing the link between them and the account holders in other banks in different parts of the country.

The cyber crooks transferred the money to 128 accounts in different banks in Delhi, Bihar, and the northeastern states.


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