International banking system hacked, says SWIFT

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© Don Hankins/Flickr
The SWIFT system has been compromised by hackers.

THE Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT), which provides the global network used to transfer billions of dollars every day, has warned clients over “a number of recent cyber incidents.”

Issued in a confidential alert, the cooperative also released an anti-malware security update to its software that 11,000 financial institutions must install by May 12.

The revelation follows the February theft of $81 million (€71.7 million) from the Bangladesh central bank in one of the largest cyber-heists yet seen.

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Computer systems were breached, and hackers transferred the money from a New York Federal Reserve account to casinos in the Philippines.

SWIFT now admit this was not an isolated incident, and said: “SWIFT is aware of a number of recent cyber incidents, in which malicious insiders or external attackers have managed to submit SWIFT messages from financial institutions’ back offices, PCs or workstations connected from their local interface to the SWIFT network.”

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