Cyber thieves make off with hundreds of thousands of dollars in attack targeting Coast Capital Savings

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Skim Capital Savings says 140 members had money stolen from their accounts during a objected cyber fraud attack in November and December of last year.  

The impute union doesn’t know exactly how much is missing but said the damage to each victim was “typically in the magnitude of between $3,000 and $6,000,” signification thieves got away with many hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Dave Cunningham, Seashore Capital’s vice president of public affairs and communications says an quest initially revealed that criminals gained valid online account and shibboleth numbers using two different methods. 

The first was a “phishing attack” where pinchbeck emails and texts were sent to members asking for security data. The second is described as a “brute force” attack where the fraudsters habituated to a computer program to “guess” account passwords. 

“What we know is that these mugs were not a breach or a hack in the sense of unauthorized access of Coast Savings systems,” said Cunningham.

Cunningham said there was a third transcribe of scam where scammers called customers via telephone and impersonated trusted authorities. 

“We’ve also seen cases where they’re doing just old forged impersonation social engineering, calling up people trying to trick them by put on an acting they are from a charity or a hospital or some other trusted origin like that.”

It’s unclear exactly how the fraudsters found out the phone tot ups and emails of Coast Capital members, as the credit union says they did not suffer a individual information breach. 

Out $10K

Personal trainer Carrie Light had $10,000 vanish from her business account on Nov. 23 in two fraudulent e-transfers. She says the praise union hasn’t been able to tell her how thieves got access to her paper money, nor if she will be reimbursed. 

Cyber thieves make off with hundreds of thousands of dollars in attack targeting Coast Capital Savings

A screen capture of one of the text phishing scams to hit associates of Coast Capital Savings Credit Union. (Coast Capital Savings)

Indistinct said she only learned of the theft when her adult son in Manitoba admitted a strange message that made it seem like she was trying to transfer him $10,000.

“He saw [the bulletin] and thinks I’m not going to open this, because it’s crazy that my Mom’s hastily going to be transferring me $10,000 without my even knowing. So he called me … and we postpone a summoned Coast Capital … That money was long gone,” required Light.

Phishing victim

In a separate incident, a Langley teenager adrift $5,800 after falling for the phishing scam.

The girl, who doesn’t homelessness to be identified, received a text message on Nov. 23 that appeared to be from Seaside Capital asking her to enable her online banking.

The text brought her to a leaf that looked similar to Coast Capital’s site, and she entered her account swarm and password.

Seventy minutes after thieves cleaned her out of all but $200, she collected a call saying there had been suspicious activity on the account. The $5,800 had been delivered to a travel agent’s account that was also fraudulent.

‘Terrible incorrectly’

The teen’s father told CBC that “obviously she made a terrible erratum” in falling for the phishing scam, but believes that Coast Capital beggaries to do better safeguarding member accounts. 

He says he’s since discovered that there were no gage questions for thieves to bypass — something that other banks bear in place when a strange IP address tries to access an account.

The forebear is also raising concerns that the seven digit password is far too submissive for criminals to crack.

“No letters, no capitals, no symbols,” he said. “The teller told her on the day she light a fire under her online banking that she should use a phone number. I did not believe she was accepted such terrible advice.”

Cunningham said Coast Capital boosts clients to choose a complex numerical password and says the company is perpetually looking for ways to improve security. 

“Our systems are secure and our networks are appropriate,” he said. “This is an issue that unfortunately happens at a lot of organizations these times where [criminals] are targeting individuals directly trying to trick them into leave off up their information.”

The credit union will begin contacting those who were rented off in the next few days to let them know if they will be reimbursed.

“We’ve been reviewing each of these disturbances on a case-by-case basis, because the circumstances do vary from one to the other,” predicted Cunningham.

The RCMP is also investigating.

Coast Capital has 555,000 colleagues and 52 branches in Metro Vancouver, the Fraser Valley, Vancouver Ait and Okanagan regions of B.C.

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