This week, around 10 Pakistani banks block international transactions on their debit cards as a precautionary step after identifying cyber attacks on their customer’s account.
According to the commercial bank’s officials, they have been informed “State Bank of Pakistan” that they block international payment on their debit and credit cards after noticing several cyber attacks on their client’s accounts.
According to the report released by one of the local tech websites in Pakistan “Past week around 8000 customers’ accounts data of 10 commercial banks sold online to hackers.”
However, the official spokesman of State Bank “Abid Qamar” told media “the report regarding data breach, cyber attacks cannot be verified yet, and they are still trying to find the proper evidence.”
He further added that since there is no such prove regarding selling of data and use to steal the money from customers’ accounts, this cannot be verified now.
On the other hand, he confirms that around 10 commercial banks in Pakistan have blocked their international transactions on debit and credit cards as a precautionary step and also informed to high authorities.
Additionally, several banks in Pakistan sent messages to its account holders regarding termination of online banking for undefined period starting from 3rd November onwards.
“Bank of Islami” first notified this recent chain of cyber attacks on October 27. According to bank officials reported that around 2.6 million PKR ($19446) was stolen from the international transaction after they have to block the international transaction to avoid any further cyberattack.
After all this mishap happens, State Bank of Pakistan issued new policies to commercial banks regarding reviving their online security measures if they are not up to international banking standards-specifically related to the online transaction and card security.
However, due to termination of the international transaction on credit and debit card leads to create massive trouble for the entrepreneurs and small businesses who are using cards of these particular banks.
“This is a serious problem for the customers who are already in foreign countries. How can they pay their bills where they are staying and how can they pay for the services they have already availed,” said Abid Baloch, a travel agent working in Karachi.
He said the banks must identify other options for making payments against their cards. “This could be disastrous for me if I would have been in Europe or America with a debit card of Pakistani bank who stops payments all of a sudden,” he said.