Technological advancement, as much as, favors the constructive mindset; it is equally vulnerable to be learned by the destructive mindset. Cyber-attacks are the perfect example of technology being misused. Such attacks are defined as politically or socially motivated attacks mostly carried out with the help of internet, targeting from general public to national organizations, and even corporate organizations. The motive of the attacks varies, sometimes from stealing personal information to even stealing banks data. Technological advancement in destructive hands has made it difficult to perceive that online transactions, personal information, sensitive information, and many other processes related to IT are safe.
Banks in Pakistan has recently experienced a cyber-attack, carried out by some hackers based outside Pakistan. Personal information of the clients, cards data and even cash was stolen. Director cybercrime wing Federal Investigation Agency(FIA), when reporting to a national tv channel, disclosed that almost all the banks of Pakistan had suffered from this attack. State bank of Pakistan, firstly, maintained that only Bank Islamic was affected.
Later on, findings by a private security firm substantiated the claim of FIA. Following the attack, number of banks terminated their online transactions, both national and international. Allegedly, numerous people have reported to the LEA’s and even to the Supreme court that their money had been with drawled overnight. FIA maintained that they have very efficient cybercrime wing, and its performance is appreciable. But banks don’t report cyber-attacks to FIA, as they fear losing them clients. This is a regular practice by corporate organizations that to keep their safe and secure image, they don’t report to LEA’s.
Recent cyber-attack on banking in Pakistan revealed the vulnerability of online banking system. It is as vulnerable as it is safe. This triggered a new debate over security measures of the banks. Director FIA cybercrime wing has called on a meeting of banks and their security management teams, to discuss the future of security measures. FIA maintained that all this has caused damage to the public, and state can’t ignore this, at all. Following the news of cyber-attack, Pakistan stock exchange had seen severe contraction in the shares of banking sector.
People when become victim to fraud or cyber-attack, they need to learn that it is not the organization itself which can help them. They also need to report to LEA’s, as they are the one assigned to address crimes and frauds. Security apparatus of banks needs serious modification, public can’t bear the loss of their hardly earned money. LEA’s, along with, calling meetings and giving recommendations after the attack, should keep an eye on the online security of banks. Indeed! The real responsibility lies with the state.
Contributor: Muneeb Khan