Hackers have a 4-day feast with Greek banking and credit cards

A double cyber attack on Greek banks has been taking place with precision over four days. A group of hackers has launched therats against the e-banking systems of three Greek banks seeking a ransom in bitcoin. Meanwhile, there are leaks of Greek debit and credit card data that  have been used for transactions with the United States in recent days.

The banks being attacked have been on alert regarding this cyber activity, and are trying to fight of the hacks with the involvement of the Cyber Crime Squad of the Greek Police, the National Intelligence Service of Greece and the Bank of Greece.

Bank hacking attacks

The first hacking activities were noted on Thursday when hackers from Russia known as Armada Collective infiltrated the electronic banking systems of three banks and sought 20,000 euros in bitcoins as ransom. The threatened to “bomb” the bank systems so that there would be a collapse in the transactions at Eurobank, Alpha Bank and Attica Bank.

Hackers made attempts to intrude into the web banking of these three Greek banks on Thursday by sending thousands of questions at once, temporary blocking the system. The attack ran for 45 minutes.

All three banks proceeded to collaborate with the government security agencies and managed to neutralize the attack without problems to the systems that are operational to this moment without any problems. The Bank of Greece, however, is on alert.

The issue was discussed on Monday at a meeting with the participation of competent authorities. The National Authority Against Electronic Attacks (NAAEA) is the body responsible for the investigation, and works with the Cyber Crime Squad of Greece as well as the Greek central bank.

Money has not been given to the hackers, however they managed to gain access to bank account details as the electronic systems were activated.

 Leaks of debit/credit card information

In another attack, an unknown number of credit card data belonging to all Greek banks appears to have been leaked in recent days. Cards involved are those used for purchasing transactions with the United States where they do not use chip-pin technology as is the case in Europe where pin numbers are required for transactions to proceed.

Sources state that it is unknown as to how the data theft of Greek banks took place, but it is due to the fact that hackers exploited the technology differences of the US and European systems.

Banks are on alert concerning this and, over the last 24 hours, the Cyber Crime Squad has been busy investigating the theft. Action is being taken to pinpoint the ring that stole the data.

Sources state that the problem does not concern web-banking but has to do with the use of debit/credit card in cyber purchases over the last few days. The shopping day after Thanksgiving Thursday is known as “Black Friday” with huge discounts leading to a massive turnover in trade worth 60 billion euros. The Monday following Black Friday is known as “Cyber Monday” due to the electronic discounts.

Hackers took advantage of the large amount of transactions taking place as a result of the 4-day shopping spree noted by consumers from Black Friday to Cyber Monday and managed to infiltrate the system.

NOTE: In the case that hackers make use of the credit card without the owners knowledge, the financial burden would not rest on the shoulders of the credit card owner as the transaction would not be proven without the use of a pin number.

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