Customers of a universal bank in Accra were left stunned after they received reports that the Cyber Crime Unit of the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) of the Ghana Police Service arrested six persons in connection with the hacking of the bank.
The actual number of affected customers is not yet confirmed however, traces reveal that the hacking led to the illegal transfer of GH¢46 million within just a few seconds from the bank to other accounts of the hackers.
A former banker and owner of Adom Sika Savings and Loans Limited, Sam Acquah, and a web developer, James Taylor, believed to be the masterminds of the cybercrime were arrested.
The suspects are Hudu Abdul Mumuni, Emmanuel Adams, Moro Issah, and Agbenu Febous Chrissy and they were arrested when they showed up at various banks to withdraw the money transferred into their accounts through the illegal wire transaction.
Two other suspects said to be part of the syndicate, who has been identified only as Boateng Mends and Pussy Cat, are on the run.
The Director of the Cyber Crime Unit of the CID, Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Dr. Gustav Herbert Yankson, told the Daily Graphic that on July 2, this year, the unit received a complaint about the fraudulent wire transfer and immediately alerted the banks where the money had been transferred to prevent withdrawals.
He said “We moved in and blocked the accounts into which the fraudulent wire transfers were made. This prevented the bank whose banking software was hacked from losing the money” stating that the management of the bank, on detecting the fraud, disabled the SWIFT server immediately to prevent further transfers, after which the banks involved were alerted to prevent withdrawals.”
He said investigations launched into the incident showed that 13 fake SWIFT transactions were fraudulently made, with the money transferred to the bank accounts of eight individuals in different banks between 1 a.m. and 10 a.m. on July 2, this year.
ACP Dr. Yankson noted that four men showed up at different banks to withdraw the amount that had been wired into their accounts illegally.
Abdul Mumuni was arrested at a bank at Ridge, while Adams was arrested at the Madina branch of another bank, with Moro Issah and Chrissy getting arrested at a bank branch at Dansoman, all in Accra, he said and the police, through their investigations, arrested Acquah and Taylor.