India is one of the fastest growing economies in the world. The earning and spending power of Indians growing strong which also translates to fatter bank balances than it used to be before. Also, with people increasingly becoming more tech-savvy combined with penetration of internet and smartphones, an average Indian consumer is most likely to make use of online banking services. While this is good news for the country, it also attracts criminals to find different ways to benefit from the situation.
Indian banks and their customers are increasingly becoming targets for these cyber criminals. The malware and ransomware attacks on banks and individuals have exhibited a steady growth. There is also an increased occurrence of phishing attacks where criminals con people into sharing their private information like banking details etc. The private/confidential information thus gathered will then be used to create false identities or commit credit/debit card fraud and more.
According to a recent report, customers of one of the leading Indian banks – ICICI Bank have become victims of a phishing scam. Many Indian customers claim to have received an email that looks like an official communication from the ICICI Bank, asking them to enter their banking details. The email asks ICICI customers to update their personal details and once the user clicks on the link, he/she will be directed to a page which looks similar to the banks portal. If extra care is not taken (like in most of the cases), the customer will proceed without verifying the authenticity of the page and end up providing his/her personal banking information to criminals. The phishing attack was identified by Comodo Threat Research Labs (CTRL) and reported to ICICI Bank officials.
Earlier this year, three more Indian banks became the target of a bitcoin ransomware, LeChiffre. The ransomware encrypted the bank systems and a demand of 1 BTC per computer was made by the criminals. Reports state that the banks paid the ransom for computers belonging to a handful of top executives.
It is advisable for people to verify the URL to ensure any communication from the bank is authentic to avoid becoming a target for hackers and cybercriminals.