RealNews

Bank security falls victim to moles

A crime ring was able to infiltrate Citigroup four years ago and pull off a dramatic $37m heist, highlighting the vulnerability of even large and relatively well- defended banks to organised crime. The incident contradicts statements made to the Financial Times by Citigroup last month in which it said it had not been infiltrated by criminals in the past nor had it suffered any significant losses as a result. According to sources familiar with the matter, the criminals were able to gain access to the funds-transfer operations of Citigroup, the world’s largest financial services company, and make two multi-million dollar transfers in the summer of 1999. The first, for $22m, was returned by the beneficiary bank after it became suspicious about the unusual account activity. However, a second transfer of nearly $15m to a Turkish bank was withdrawn by the criminals a few weeks later. Asked later about the specific incident, Citigroup said it was “co-operating with authorities and taking necessary actions to recover any losses”. While it could not comment on individual cases, Citigroup said: “We safeguard our customers’ assets with vigilance and our methods are effective.” Full Story

OODA Analyst

OODA Analyst

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