money & Banking

Basmah Qazi

URGENT: Major security breach after customers banking information hacked

URGENT: Major security breach after customers banking information hacked

An urgent warning has been issued after hackers broke into a new payment system that put tens of thousands of customers’ personal banking information at risk.

The scammers were able to obtain phone numbers, customer names, BSB and account numbers which were all linked to PayID. The fraudsters targeted unsuspecting customers with fake texts and phone calls in order to access the New Payments Platform (NPP) database and steal millions of dollars, according to the Herald Sun.

All big four banks around the country were affected as those impacted include Commonwealth Bank, National Australia Bank, ANZ and Westpac.

Westpac emailed its customers urging them to remain vigilant, as the stolen data could be used to commit fraud.

It is understood that the breach initially took place at another bank, but soon spread to other financial institutions.

“We have heightened monitoring on your account and ask that you are on the lookout for any suspicious activity,” read the email.

“We ask that you also be vigilant with any messages received via text or phone calls from an unidentified source.

“We are urging all customers to be wary of any SMS phishing attempts – for example, a personalised message which looks like a legitimate message from Westpac or another bank, in an attempt to acquire banking credentials and password,” it said.

The NPP was a highly anticipated initiative that was introduced in 2018, promising to deliver 24/7 instant transfers, as it moved cash in seconds.