Over $45 million has been stolen in one of the biggest ever bank heists by a global cyber crime ring. The money was taken from two Middle Eastern banks by hacking into credit card processing firms and taking money out from ATMs in 27 countries.
Seven men have been arrested in the United States accused of allegedly forming the New York organization. An eighth suspect is reported to have been murdered in the Dominican Republic in April.
The $45 million from the Bank of Muscat of Oman and the National Bank of Ras Al-Khaimah of the United Arab Emirates was withdrawn in 27 countries involving 36,000 transactions carried out by casher crews.
According to investigators the gang hacked into two credit card processors, one in India in December of last year and the other in the United States in February. They increased the available balance and withdrawal on prepaid MasterCard cards issued by the banks. They then distributed counterfeit cards to their network around the world.
No individual bank accounts are reported to have been hacked.