CYBER CRIME: A MAJOR THREAT TO SMALL BANKS

The term cybercrime has emerged with the phenomenal growth of the social interaction on internet and its unscrupulous users. Basically it is the virtual way of committing crimes by the means of computers and internet. Cybercrimes are carried out to steal the intellectual property at individual, corporate and sometimes at the state level.

Cybercrime has become a threat for financial industry especially for small banks and financial institutions .where online banking facilitates its costumers on one side, it has opened new door for criminals on the other side. Hacking customer account information through distributed denial-of- service attack and…….. the reason behind the hacking and cracking of the computer systems is the greed motivation of the group to earn quick money. It is commonly believed that the financial industry is so armed in their security system that they can protect their infrastructure but till now in only US the companies face an average estimated financial damage of $ 195,000 each year.

Ease of access to a compromised server made financial institutes and banks a preferred target. A variety of pre- equipped software is used for this purpose. The most common example is the hacking of customer account information and withdrawing the money with fake vouchers. According to Juniper Research the cost of cybercrime in financial sector could be as high as 2 trillion by 2019.

Over the past decade the financial industries of  US, UK, Japan, China , UAE , were the focal targets for cyber criminals, but when it comes to the security system of small banks of Asian and African countries it becomes much easier for offenders to hack systems. In Bangladesh, Pakistan and India there are hundreds of such cases. Why? Because small financial institutes and banks cannot afford high- tech cyber security plans to trace espionage.

When the small banks interact with big banks in UK and US, it becomes easy for the criminals to commit fraud of millions and billions of dollars. These malicious malware are increasing because small banking system are compromised ending up with irremediable damage. On the other side unsecure and outdated system allow the hacker to approach the target easily e.g. similar passwords in outdated systems can play a vital role to hack the account easily.

Nevertheless insurance can refund the money of the costumers but cannot mitigate the risk of wreckage in future. Employee training courses on identification of risk, risk assessment and data loss prevention should be conducted. A sophisticated internal security task team should work along with management and other employees to support the online banking without any crash. The strategic starting point of all the data flow should be threat intelligence to avoid the vulnerability of accounts at the cost of data encryption.

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