The State Minister of Finance M A Mannan expressed concerns about the lack of skilled manpower and logistics to combat cyber crimes in the country’s banking sector. This is incompatible with the modern banking sector equipped with ATM, the internet and mobile banking technologies.
These user-friendly services have brought banking to a new height in pace with the global banking system and almost all clients use at least one of these technologies to meet day-to-day banking needs.
Obviously, their vulnerability to cyber crimes will affect this confidence, when business is quite difficult without the valuable services of banks.
These technologies have become integral parts of the banking system and utilisation of these facilities has not only increased confidence of clients in the banking system but also contributed to increased profits of banks.
It significantly worries clients, businessmen and all concerned who use banking facilities, when country’s banks suffer vulnerability to online frauds. Fraudsters managed to swindle some Tk 10 million from the ATM networks of different banks last year. Earlier in 2014, criminals took out Tk 20 million from Sonali Bank by hacking its risk management system. And a syndicate of hackers made payments of $81 million exploiting the sophisticated SWIFT network through using one of the computers of the country’s central bank in February 2016.
The recent worldwide cyber ransom attack renews the safety concerns. Anyone cannot but become worried in this situation and at the news that banks still suffer a serious shortfall in terms of availability of skilled and capable workforce to prevent cyber attacks. According to the Bangladesh Institute of Bank Management (BIBM), around 30 per cent banks carry ‘very high’ risks of cyber crimes. It pointed out that ATM and plastic card transactions and mobile banking account for 43 and 25 per cent of the online frauds respectively. And this vulnerability is attributed to low investment in IT security, audit and training.
The cyber heist of the central bank’s reserve fund has been a wake-up call for the country’s banking system. The government should take strategic steps and implement the same to ensure training of IT officials and recruitment of skilled manpower to safeguard the banking system against cyber crimes.