Hackers steal $15 million from Mexico financial system

Mexican authorities say an investigation is under way, without indicating if the suspected hackers were domestic or international. (AFP)
Updated 17 May 2018
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Hackers steal $15 million from Mexico financial system

MEXICO: Hackers who targeted Mexico’s interbank payment system made off with more than $15 million in the past several weeks, the Bank of Mexico said Wednesday.
The amount of funds involved in the irregular activity totaled “approximately 300 million pesos ($15.3 million),” central bank governor Alejandro Diaz de Leon told reporters.
He said commercial bank customers’ accounts were never in danger.
An investigation is under way, the governor said, without indicating if the suspected hackers were domestic or international.
The interbank payments system allows banks to make real-time transfers to each other.
They connect via their own computer systems or an external provider — the point where the attacks appear to have taken place, Lorenza Martinez, director general of the corporate payments and services system at the central bank, said on Monday.
Martinez revealed that at least five attacks had occurred but, at that time, said the amount taken was still being analyzed.
After the attacks were detected, banks switched to a slower but more secure method.


EU slaps sanctions on Syrians, Russians over attacks

Updated 21 January 2019
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EU slaps sanctions on Syrians, Russians over attacks

  • EU foreign ministers slapped travel bans and asset freezes on nine people and on Syria’s Scientific Studies and Research Center

BRUSSELS: The European Union on Monday imposed sanctions on four Russians blamed for a nerve agent attack in Britain as well as a Syrian research center and its staff as the 28-nation bloc stepped up its action against the use of chemical weapons.
EU foreign ministers slapped travel bans and asset freezes on nine people and on Syria’s Scientific Studies and Research Center.
Five of those targeted are linked to the Syrian center’s activities. Britain’s foreign office said they “have played a central role in the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian regime against their own people.”
The four Russians on the list are the two men accused of planting the nerve agent in Salisbury last March, Anatoly Chepiga and Alexander Mishkin, and their superiors, the head and deputy head of the GRU, Russia’s military intelligence unit.
The ministers said in a statement from their meeting in Brussels that the sanctions move “contributes to the EU’s efforts to counter the proliferation and use of chemical weapons, which poses a serious threat to international security.”
It’s the first time the EU has imposed sanctions to combat chemical weapons.
“Today’s new sanctions deliver on our vow to take tough action against the reckless and irresponsible activities of the Russian military intelligence organization, the GRU, which put innocent British citizens in serious danger in Salisbury last year,” British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said in a statement.
“We will continue to show our willingness to stand up for the international rules that keep us safe, and which the Kremlin and the Assad regime seek to undermine,” he added.