Why do hackers attack banks in Mexico and AL? Because it's easy



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In the last five years, cybercriminals have found a way effective, accelerated, and cost-effective way to get large amounts of money attacking the financial sector in Latin America, including Mexico, even when it comes to running more complex attacks that require more time.

"Payment systems in Latin America and Mexico have become the new target of the intruders to see that it is really easy to make fraudulent transactions derived from exploiting vulnerabilities in a web service," said Miguel Ángel Mendoza, a security researcher. of the ESET Latin America laboratory, in an interview for El Financiero.

After eight years of attempts, cybercriminals & # 39; reached the nail through the vector of attack called exploit of vulnerabilities, with which they succeeded in taking advantage of the failures in financial sector systems, such as the violations registered in relation to the Interbank Electronic Payment System (SPEI) in Mexico, carried out by groups with the characteristics of Persistent Advanced Threat (APT) Spanish). English)

El Financiero published on May 14 that during the attacks in April there would have been a robbery of around 400 million pesos, of which Banorte was the most affected bank, with a value of 150 million pesos.

"We have seen that cybeques are currently targeted and focused on extracting money. These are complex methods that get higher numbers faster than if they were done with phishing campaigns or Denial of Service (DoS) techniques (other types of attack), since the results would be slower and lower, "explained the expert.

In 2018, 92% of banking institutions in Latin America suffered cyber attacks, according to data from the Organization of American States (OAS). Mexico, Uruguay, Chile and Ecuador are among the most affected countries before this type of violations. The total number of losses in the region is unknown.

In the case of Mexico, although SPEI has not been directly violated, cyber attackers have damaged the infrastructure through which banks connect to the web system.

"This does not mean that it will always be so, probably later they may find a way to do it. So far deficiencies have been identified in how operations are performed, whether by the institution's own process, in technological infrastructure or through an attack on the supply chain of the service provider, "explained the researcher.

An unappealable reality, according to ESET studies, is that vulnerabilities have become one of the main access portsfor cybercriminals, who know that the The risk of being arrested in the region is very low.

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