Cosmos Bank Attack: State police to set up SIT, even as customers left cash-strapped

Updated: Aug 16, 2018, 08:13 IST | Chaitraly Deshmukh

The Maharashtra state police has decided to form an SIT to probe the case

Cosmos Bank Attack: State police to set up SIT, even as customers left cash-strapped
The bank has disabled ATM facility and online transactions for two days as a precaution. Pic/Pradeep Dhivar

A day after the suspected malware attack on Cosmos Bank's head office in Pune, which led to siphoning off of Rs 94.42 crore, the Maharashtra State Police along with the Pune police and private cyber experts had a meeting. The state police has decided to form an SIT to probe the case.

Brijesh Singh, Maharashtra Police's cybersecurity head, who attended the meeting, said, "Under the guidance of the DGP, we along with cyber experts and Pune police will set up an SIT. There are two lines of investigation in this case, including one about the SWIFT system of payment. We will check if notes pertaining to the bank's security were taken during audits. We will also look into the possibility of inside involvement."

Mayuri Shinde, Social Worker
Mayuri Shinde, Social Worker

Customers in trouble
There was, however, no respite for customers, as they continued to face issues in the withdrawal of their money. Pune resident and businessman Sandeep Kulkarni said, "This bank cuts a fee for RTGS money transfer, cheque books and other services. We never complained, assuming this was for ensuring quality service; but this incident has shaken us.

"I have to pay my labourers, but I am unable to do that. Also, I am in Kashi at the moment with my family and have been unable to withdraw money for trip expenses. Ultimately, I had to ask my friend to transfer some amount in the account of a local and get that person to withdraw for me."

For advocate Manisha Kavediya, it's a question of daily sustenance as her salary account is with Cosmos Bank. "The cheque still hasn't cleared. Unaware, I paid for fuel via debit card at a petrol pump only to have the card declined as there was no money in the account. I then had to call my father for help. On the one hand, the government talks about going cashless and digital, and on the other, this is the state of affairs," she said.

Computer engineer-social worker Mayuri Shinde said, "It was my brother's birthday; so, we shopped a lot. But when I gave my card for payment, the transaction wouldn't go through. It was a publicly humiliating experience. I even tried to log onto netbanking to transfer money through that but couldn't. Now, I am worried about my EMIs, which I have to pay on every 17th. How am I going to manage that?"

Officialspeak
Cosmos Bank chairman Milind Kale said, "Citizens need not panic, their money is safe. This bank is 112 years old; it has ample funds. We've only disabled ATM facility and online transactions for two days as a precaution. Thursday onwards, customers can contact their respective branches and get help. We appeal to all to cooperate with us."

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