Economy

BMO, Simplii Financial Report Possible Data Breaches

BMO, Simplii Financial Report Possible Data Breaches

Bank of Montreal and Simplii Financial, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce's direct banking unit, are both warning their respective clients that personal and account information may have been compromised.

Bank of Montreal (BMO.TO), Canada's fourth biggest lender, said on Monday it was contacted by fraudsters on Sunday who claimed they were in possession of the personal and financial information of a limited number of the bank's customers.

The hackers seem to have obtained sensitive information like names, account numbers, passwords, security questions and answers, social insurance numbers and account balances, by exploiting weaknesses in security systems of the two Canadian banks. The bank believes the attack originated from outside of Canada. "We are proactively contacting those customers that may have been impacted and we will support and stand by them".

"Our practice is not to make payments to fraudsters", Bank of Montreal said.

The bank is now investigating if the claim is true, but in the meantime, it says it deployed "enhanced online fraud monitoring and online banking security measures" to prevent abuse of customers' data.

More news: Israel must continue assassination operations in Gaza 'as of tonight,' minister says

"We warned BMO and Simplii that we would share their customers informations if they don't cooperate", a Russian-based email purportedly from the fraudsters and shared with various members of the media said Monday evening.

Gammal said the potential breach at BMO appears to be related to the CIBC issue. It is also "assessing" fraud claims from clients, a spokesperson said.

The company added that there is now no indication that clients who bank through CIBC have been affected.

"We are monitoring the situation closely with the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions", she said in an emailed statement.

Last fall, credit reporting service Equifax notified the public that hackers accessed or stole the personal data of 145.5 million USA customers and 19,000 Canadians. "The banks involved in claims of a potential data breach acted swiftly in response, launched full-scale investigations and took immediate action to enhance online security measures to protect customers". In order to ensure the integrity of the stolen data, hackers have now demanded a random of $1 Million worth of XRP, otherwise, they promise to leak the personal data online.


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