Nu 16 million was recently remitted by the Bank of Bhutan (BoB) to the three different accounts in India, Malaysia and Thailand, upon a fake email from a Royal Audit Authority (RAA) employee whose account had been hacked. In this connection the BoB and RAA said that the case is still under investigation by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC).
BoB said the incident is causing people to have a misunderstanding, that the money that is deposited with the bank may not be safe anymore. “It is impossible to hack the bank system since the bank has very high security system and the bank has invested a very huge amount in banking security and upgraded this year to even higher standards,” a BoB official said.
The official said, “It’s not the bank system, the fraud happened through the RAA’s personal email account which was hacked.”
However, BoB also admitted saying, “There is some lapse from our side too, because we should have called before transferring the amount, but ‘urgent payment’ was mentioned on the top of the letter with all the original signatures on the official document.” Adding that such transactions are frequent with RAA as it is a big and trusted company, and such lapses are unexpected.
According to BoB, the bank system normally checks before the transaction happens and corresponds all signatures and credentials which was perfectly matched with the advice of the RAA sheet.
BoB also said that Nu 10 million was retrieved already with the help of Royal Monetary Authority (RMA) and the correspondent bank, and they are still working on retrieving Nu 6 million.
The bank official also assured that such incidents will not occur in future since the bank will review and reinforce the internal operational controls to prevent such incidents.
He also said that the bank will be fully responsible for any transactional loses to the customers if any.
However, he said that the case is expected to be solved soon since the ACC, RMA and State Bank of India are helping to retrieve the transacted amount and are working on rectifying the case.