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Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Banking and Cyber crime

Financial Cyber crime is one of those things that we never pay much attention to until one day, it happens to us or our friends. 

One of my friends has an account with ICICI bank, a private bank in India. At 5 AM in the morning, he got a  text message that Rs. 3000 has been transferred from his account to Weightwatchers in UK. He called the customer care of ICICI and was promptly put on hold. 
So, he entered the password to his online transaction incorrectly so as to lock his account, thereby disabling any online transaction. 

By the time he was finally put through to the customer care at 6 AM after 30 minutes waiting, he had to speak to several fucking supervisors/ managers and verify his details at every stage. Meanwhile, he also received a SMS that his transaction for Rs. 17000 had failed, this transaction was not initiated by him, but the hacker. 

He had explained the failed attempt at hacking to the sodding customer care managers but they very least concerned about the crime and the gravity of the situation. They had refused to look into the matter or provide details about the receiver or contact them to stop the transaction and report the user who had initiated the purchase.

After much argument, they had informed that the recipient was Weightwatchers, UK and informed that nothing would be done from their end to cancel the transaction with the merchant. Further, they had also informed him that without an FIR (First Information Report) lodged with the local police station, they would not take up his complaint for investigation. They had also told him that he needs to pay for a new debit card as he has now disabled the current debit card used for online transaction.

Online banking  and private banking exist only in the cities of India, mainly the metropolis. In the main cities, ATMs, online banking, online shopping are extensively used. They are still a novelty for majority of Indians in many of the states and rural areas. 

Nationalized banks hold the major banking market of India. Unfortunately, they have not evolved much into Online banking and transactions and are still in the preliminary stage of the Internet era of banking. 

I can only say that as customers, everyone should close their accounts, take their money elsewhere and let such irresponsible banks sink to hell.


  1. I think that you are right. Lousy people, they don't deserve it.

  2. Customer service in these banks needs to improve greatly and in a hurry.

  3. Ruby you are right. I love a good rant but this one is completely justified.
    It has got better here but fifteen years ago it was much the same. The banks seemed to disable accounts at random just to make it look as if they were doing something. It could take a day to get things working again.

    1. Ahh, yes. We don't mind the wait Adrian. The trouble is we never get see the money again once it is hacked. A very terrible situation!

  4. Oh how maddening. I would be irked also. The system seems to be much better around here. I've witnessed someone dealing with our Royal Bank over an SMS scam and they were very helpful. I hope it improves there before too long. Would writing to a national paper help? Or do they just have too little competition, perhaps?

    1. I suspect it is the poor quality of the software and inefficiency of the staff. Businesses in India have not realised that integrity and customer care are most important for long term efficiency and profits. There have been several articles and awareness raised. Yes, the competition is not huge as most MNCs cater only to privileged clients and wealth management instead of retail. Pnly Nationalised bank are in retail and control more than 50% of the market yet they are technically challenged.

  5. I agree, ICICI's net banking is way too complicated and so is their customer care.

  6. I agree, ICICI's net banking is way too complicated and so is their customer care.

  7. ✿彡

    Boa semana!
    Beijinhos do Brasil.
    ✿♫° ·.

  8. We had credit card hacked once. The card company themselves called and asked if we had bought plane tickets to an Asian country. The card had honored the plane tickets but we didn't get held accountable for the costs. The ticket buyers had hacked in California and then bought tickets to go somewhere in the east. We don't feel comfortable with any of our cards including the bank card.


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