Banco de Chile lost $10 million while battling virus infection

Banco de Chile lost $10 million while battling virus infection

Hackers infiltrated the IT systems of Banco de Chile with disk-wiping malware, causing chaos and distracting from the theft of $10 million via the international Swift network.

The Chilean bank in late May reported that it needed to disconnect work stations and interrupt certain regular procedures to control the spread of a virus that crashed branch and telephone banking systems across the country as it wormed its way onto desktop computers.

The KillDisk virus is believed to have infiltrated a large part of the bank's 9000 computers and 500 servers, wiping hard drives and leaving them in a non-rebootable state.

A report by Trend Micro connected the modus operandi used by the attackers to a recent attempt by hackers to steal over $110 million from Bancomext.

"Our analysis indicates that the attack was used only as a distraction," Trend Micro reports. "The end goal was to access the systems connected to the bank’s local Swift network."

Eduardo Ebensperger, Banco de Chile has confirmed the suspicions in a statement to local reporters, stating that four fraudulent transactions were carried out during the incident.

"We found some strange transactions in the Swift system," he says. "There we realized that the virus was not necessarily the underlying issue, but apparently wanted to defraud the bank."

The bank is taking legal action against an unidentified correspondent in Hong Kong in an attempt to retrieve the stolen funds.

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