Were Second-Hand Routers Responsible for Hacking of Bangladesh’s Central Bank — Yes, of course!
Bangladesh Central Bank became the target of a hack attack only because of the inefficient and insufficient security network in both hardware and software departments. With this hack, the malicious attackers managed to rake in $81 million, the equivalent of which is £56m. The main culprit in this scenario is being dubbed as the poor security measures implemented by the Central Bank.
According to reports from Reuters, the back didn’t implement any firewall and also was using second-hand routers. The routers utilized by the bank were so cheap that their cost was $10. How intelligent is this to use such low-quality routers to secure globally active financial networks?
Reporters from Reuters also quoted an official from the investigating team that if the bank had used better security options and reliable hardware was installed, the attackers wouldn’t have been able to pull off such magnanimous attack. In fact, the hackers wanted to extract at least $1 billion but mistakenly they were spotted and thus, stopped from doing any more damage.
Nonetheless, the notion cannot be negated that a better firewall would certainly have helped the bank instead of the hackers who made use of poor security installments and software. According to Mohammad Shah Alam, the forensic expert part of the investigating team stated that the attempt would have become “difficult” for sure.
Also, these cheap routers have created obstacles in the investigation process, claims Mr. Alam. It is so because they could only collect the little amount of network data and thus, this data shortage will prove to be a hindrance in shedding light on the tactics used by the attackers.
This hack occurred in February this year and hackers were able to access the main network of the bank, after which they used this privileged access to transfer cash from Bangladesh’s account in the Federal Reserve Bank of New York to several other banks.
Due to a typo error in one of their transfer orders, the bank’s staff became aware of the hacking feat in the process and that’s why the hackers managed to take our $81 million. They have transferred the amount into bank accounts and casinos located in the Philippines. A Larger chunk of the stolen cash hasn’t been recovered as yet.
Security experts in Bangladesh and also all around the world are criticizing the bank’s lackluster security measures. Cyber firm Optiv’s consultant Jeff Wichman stated: “You are talking about an organization that has access to billions of dollars and they are not taking even the most basic security precaution.”