JEDDAH – The Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA) has launched an investigation into the hacking of Riyad Bank’s website Monday morning. SAMA has asked the bank to provide it with a detailed report on the incident.
An official source at SAMA confirmed that the agency will punish any bank which is lax in protecting its website against hackers. The bank’s homepage was penetrated by the hacker, who claimed he broke in to register a complaint against an official in Madina. The SAMA source said the hacker will be questioned by the security authorities before referring him to the judiciary. The courts will try him under cyber laws. The Shoura Council has introduced a set of laws to combat the growing threat of cyber crimes in the Kingdom.
The SAMA source played down the incident, pointing out that the hacker had no criminal motive. “He has more passion to be famous, rather than to belittle the bank’s officials or steal from customers’ accounts.”
The bank’s management said the incident was not worrying because the hacker did not target the pages containing the bank’s transactions or customer accounts.
It stressed that the operation was controlled in less than two hours. It denied any negligence or shortcomings on its side.
It emphasized that the penetration took place on the external site which has nothing to do with customer accounts; and that the bank has advanced technology to secure its accounts.
The management said that other electronic safety systems prevented the hacker from breaking into the bank’s internal systems. The safety system also stopped him from accessing the bank’s financial data and customer accounts. It stressed that the administration dealt quickly with the situation.
The management claimed that its website was specifically hacked because it is a famous bank. It said that hackers have broken into other banks worldwide. – Okaz/SG