Saturday August 13, 2022

NBP hit by outages in cyber attack

October 31, 2021
NBP hit by outages in cyber attack

KARACHI: National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) on Saturday said it was responding with urgency to a cyber attack on its services that failed to steal funds or any costumer’ data but affected bank’s services.

“In the late hours of the 29th and early morning of the 30th October, a cyber-attack on the NBP's servers was detected which impacted some of its service,” the bank said in a statement.

It said immediate steps were taken to isolate the affected systems. “At this point, no customer or financial data has been compromised.”

The central bank at its official twitter handle said the NBP had reported a cyber security related incident which was being investigated.

“NBP has not observed any data breach or financial loss. No other bank has reported any such incidence,” the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) said.

“The SBP is monitoring the situation closely to ensure safety and soundness of banking system,” the central bank added.

NBP statement said remediation efforts were underway using industry’s leading experts including international resources wherever required.

“While currently National Bank of Pakistan’s services to its customers are disrupted, we are working to address the breach and confident that essential customer services will be restored by Monday morning,” the bank said.

In 2018, at least six Pakistani banks had suspended usage of their debit cards outside the country after BankIslami suffered a cyber attack that siphoned off Rs2.6 million to the dismay of its unsuspecting consumers.

Then, a Moscow-based anti-fraud firm, the Group IB, said nine Pakistani banks, including BankIslami, Habib Bank, JS Bank, Faysal Bank, Soneri Bank, Bank of Punjab, Bank Alfalah, Silkbank, and MCB Bank witnessed abnormal transactions.

The skimming took details of nearly 20,000 debit and credit cards from 22 Pakistani banks, according to Pakistan Computer Emergency Response Team (PakCERT), a monitoring group.

Following the incident, the SBP issued directives to all banks to foster arrangements to ensure security of all payment cards in the country and monitor on real-time basis usage activity of their cards, especially overseas transactions.

The NBP in its statement said the bank was committed to the safety of its clients trust in “unusual situation”.