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Union Bank was Hacked and How it Got Back its Money

 

A hack of $171 million in one of the banks run by the state has emerged at a time when the government has been promoting digital money transactions to move forward.

 

The Hindu reported in July 2016 stating that $171 million was routed to seven different countries from the Union Bank of India before the authorities recovered the money in July 2016.

 

This hack of $171 million in July 2016 is the biggest one, the details of which are just emerging which has necessitated a hunt at seven countries by the top levels of government to recover the theft. The hack is double the size of the Bangladesh Central Bank which lost $81 million in February 2016 but most of the details have been kept under wraps till now.

 

Thehindu.com posted on April 15th, 2017, quoting the confirmation made by Arun Tiwari, Chairman of the Union Bank of India and Dr. Gulshan Rai, Chief of India's cyber security who were involved in the operation.

 

While reconciling the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) payment for the day, the officials of Union Bank treasury department realized that an amount of $171 million had already been taken out from the dollar account of the bank without his authorization and the money gone away to far and wide places.

 

The report reveals that by the time higher-up of authorities became aware of what had happened, the money had already reached in banks at Thailand, Cambodia, Australia and Taiwan. The money was apparently sent across by JP Morgan Chase and Citibank in New York, who hold foreign exchange accounts of UBI.

 

CERT-In, RBI investigated the inspection. When Union Bank received it from the originating bank, they saw a difference of $170 million and that alerted them due to one mistake-the hackers deleted six entries which they made. For example, if the report reveals 106 transactions whereas they have done only 100 transactions, the difference will come to light. This is one of the reasons why the hackers deleted six transactions in the Union Bank incident.

 

However, the hack was also discovered because of this reason.

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