UK police foil £220m hi-tech bank heist

UK police foil £220m hi-tech bank heist

Police from the UK's National Hi-Tech Crime Unit (NHTCU) have foiled attempts by a cyber crime gang to steal £220m from the London offices of the Japanese banking group Sumitomo Mitsui.

The gang hacked into Sumitomo Mitsui's computer network in London last October, using keylogging software to steal passwords and access the network. They then tried to transfer the cash electronically to 10 separate bank accounts around the world.

But the plan was uncovered by the NHTCU before any funds were taken.

So far one man has been arrested in Israel in connection with the incident, after an attempt to transfer EUR20m into a business account there. According to press reports he has been charged with money laundering and deception, but both the NHTCU and Israeli police are continuing their investigations into the attepted theft.

Details of how the keylogging program was installed at the bank's London office have not been disclosed.

A spokesperson for Sumitomo Mitsui told reporters that the bank had not suffered any financial loss and had taken 'appropriate' security measures since the attempted online robbery.

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