Bangladesh Bank cybertheft leaves Philippine authorities rattled

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The whopping $81 million loss by Bangladesh’s central bank in one of history’s biggest cyber heists has left the Philippines — where the money wound up — scrambling to save face. The Southeast Asian nation’s biggest and first cross-border money laundering scandal left both financial regulators and legislators rattled, and the failure to stop launderers and tax evaders has become a major issue in the run-up to the Philippine elections in May. The incident has turned a spotlight on defects in the nation’s banking and casino regulations, as well as the vulnerability of emerging-market institutions to online theft.

Reports have emerged about hackers introducing malicious software into Bangladesh Bank’s system in January to gain information about its working methods.

“It’s a classic cybersecurity threat case,” said Sanchit Gogia, CEO at Greyhound Research, an information technology and telecommunications consulting company.


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