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SIT gives ‘7-day ultimatum’ to Cosmos Bank to submit forensic report of cyber theft

DCP (cyber and economic offences wing) has demanded PwC report into the Rs 94.42 crore cyber fraud as state authority don’t want the investigation to be delayed.

Updated: Sep 11, 2018 18:16:53

By Nadeem Inamdar

On August 14, 2018, the Maharashtra government had constituted a special investigative team led by Jyotipriya Singh, deputy commissioner of police (cyber and economic offences wing), to probe into the Cosmos Bank theft of Rs 94.42 crore by cyber criminals. (HT FILE PHOTO)

PUNE: Nearly one month after a multinational hacking ring siphoned off Rs 94.42 crore from Cosmos Bank here, the economic offences wing (EOW) and cyber cell of Pune police are awaiting the forensic report from PwC (PricewaterhouseCoopers) to proceed with the investigations.

On August 14, the Maharashtra government had constituted a special investigative team (SIT) led by Jyotipriya Singh, deputy commissioner of police (cyber and economic offences wing), to probe into the theft of Rs 94.42 crore by cyber criminals. Singh told Hindustan Times that while the preliminary report has been received, the full forensic report is awaited from the bank. “We have served them an ultimatum of seven days to give us the forensic report as we don’t want the investigation to be delayed,” she said.

The bank’s chairman Milind Kale, said, “We ourselves have not got the forensic report so from where will we give the report to the police.” He said the details of the preliminary report cannot be disclosed.

It was on August 14 that Cosmos Bank publicly revealed the theft of Rs 94.42 crore from the pool account by a multinational hacking ring on August 11 and August 13. In the first hit, the bank lost an aggregate of Rs 80.50 crore in multiple ATM swipes in 28 countries, while in the second cyber assault, the hackers siphoned off Rs 13.92 crore via Swift transfers.



An FIR was lodged against unidentified persons by the bank’s managing director Suhas Subhash Gokhale (53) under Indian Penal Code (IPC) Sections 379 (theft), 420 (cheating),120 (B) (conspiracy) and 34 and Sections 43,65,66 (C) and 66 (D) of the Information Technology Act at Chatuhshrungi police station.

Singh said that since transnational cyber attackers were involved, the collection of digital evidence is very large and voluminous and will take time. The SIT has so far recovered about Rs 6 lakh from the accidental beneficiaries of cyber attack.

Meanwhile, the ATM facilities at all the 140 branches will remain suspended for the next two days pending cyber security compliances. Cosmos Bank director Govind Kshirsagar said the ATMs will be activated after receiving security clearance from the cyber cell. “The mobile internet banking has already been activated,” he said.

Kale had earlier informed the press that the bank ATMs were being sanitised and a vulnerability assessment and penetration test (VAPT) had been done on the internet banking system.

The VAPT and security tests were conducted by the consultancy firm KPMG.

The Rs 15,000-crore Cosmos Bank is the country’s second oldest and second largest cooperative bank in terms of deposits and advances.

First Published: Sep 11, 2018 17:55:20

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