Online Fraudsters Increasingly Skilled at Hacking Bank Accounts


All this week, we’ve been looking at the complexities of cybersecurity, including the potential for attacks on government computers and the views of former CIA and NSA director Michael Hayden on the scope of the “cyber conflict.”

On Thursday’s NewsHour, we look at the vulnerabilities of our personal information online, including banking information. Incidents of Bonnie and Clyde style bank robberies, with guns blazing, are few and far between these days. The modern day bank robber is more likely at a computer terminal, perhaps somewhere in Eastern Europe or East Asia.

As more and more Americans do their banking via the Internet and smart phones, the U.S. has become an increasingly attractive target for the cyber criminals, who do large “phishing” schemes until they find a ripe account. While producing our story, we attended a security round table in San Francisco, organized by Guardian Analytics, a fraud prevention software company.

Guardian Analytics CEO Terry Austin told the bankers and others in attendance: “Cyber criminals have developed the infrastructure to share information with each other, making them a powerful, fast-moving enemy. … Conventional wisdom is not enough to stop fraudsters.” Later, in his offices in Silicon Valley, he explained more about online banking vulnerabilities: