Hackers Ripped Off Nearly $1 Billion From Banks According To Kaspersky

Given the string of success hackers have had with compromising the security of major retailers, it can’t be surprising that hackers have also been targeting more juicy targets – namely, banks. After Russian anti-malware company Kaspersky was brought in to investigate a malfunctioning ATM in the Ukraine, it discovered that a group of hackers had been ripping off banks for the past two years, possibly raking in more than $900 million.

The affected banks working with Kaspersky have been keeping quiet during the investigation and it’s possible that even more banks have been breached, but haven’t alerted authorities or joined the investigation. Kaspersky will release a report today that estimates banks in as many as 30 countries are affected.

Kaspersky released a report on a massive cyberfraud that bilked banks of nearly $1 billion around the world.
Kaspersky also recently released information on the costs of all hacking in 2014. Image credit: Kaspersky

Kaspersky named the group Carbanak after the malware it uses. The plan was elaborate – the hackers used email-delivered malware to gain access to bank networks, then used each bank’s own video surveillance to monitor clerks. The gang mimicked bank employee behavior so it could work undetected as it began transferring funds to accounts under its control.

The New York Times, which received a copy of Kaspersky’s report early, has reported that the F.B.I. has been briefed on the attacks. Banks are surely moving to plug their security holes, but it remains to be seen whether banks can (and will) protect themselves from these kinds of attacks.