FinMin leads brainstorming session to tackle financial sector cyber crimes

FinMin leads brainstorming session to tackle financial sector cyber crimes

Vivek Joshi, Secretary, Department of Financial Services | Photo Credit: KAMAL NARANG

DFS Secretary Vivek Joshi leads crucial meeting, advocates coordinated action among policy makers, regulators, and banking leaders

The country’s top policy makers, bureaucrats, bankers and regulators overseeing financial and telecom sector on Tuesday brainstormed the strategy and measures that would be taken in coming days to squarely tackle the menace of increased online financial frauds and cybercrimes in the financial sector.

The meeting, chaired by the Department of Financial Services (DFS) Secretary Vivek Joshi, resolved to renew focus on facilitating seamless coordination between police, banks and financial entities for real time tracking and blocking of defrauded money.

It was noted at the meeting that 70 lakh mobile connections involved in cybercrime/ financial frauds reported through digital intelligence platforms have been disconnected so far. Also ₹900-crore defrauded money has been saved, benefitting 3.5 lakh victims.

UCO Bank case
This meeting is significant as it came on the heels of UCO Bank episode involving erroneous transfer of ₹820 crore to some of its account holders under the Immediate Payment Service (IMPS) Facility due to a “technical issue”.

Today’s meeting discussed about bringing all financial institutions including NBFCs and major cooperative banks on ‘Citizen Financial Cyber Fraud Reporting and Management System (CFCFRMS)’ platform, wherein 259 financial intermediaries are already onboarded. Strategy to tackle menace of mule accounts by banks was also discussed, sources said.

Banks have been advised to improve the response time in handling the alerts on online financial frauds received from different agencies.

Another issue that was discussed related to appointment of regional/ state level nodal officers by the banks and financial institutions to cater to the requirements of law enforcement agencies.

Also discussed were steps around whitelisting of digital lending apps through consultation with relevant stakeholders and maintaining a central registry of onboarding of merchants and standardisation of KYC.

Digital lending
The status on implementation of recommendations of the Digital Lending Working Group including setting up of Digital India Trust Agency (DIGITA) and bringing a new legislation ‘Banning of Unregulated Lending Activities (BULA) Act were discussed.

All stakeholders including banks and financial institutions will now undertake more customer awareness and sensitisation programmes on digital payments security, it was decided.

The Indian Cyber Crime Co-ordination Center (I4C), Ministry of Home Affairs, made a presentation on the latest statistics of digital payment frauds as reported in the National Cyber Crime Reporting Portal (NCRP), various sources of these financial frauds, modus operandi adopted by the fraudsters, including challenges faced to counter financial cybercrimes.

Further, representatives from State Bank of India made a brief presentation on the proactive risk monitoring strategy implemented by SBI. Besides, PayTM and Razorpay representatives also shared their best practices which has enabled them to mitigate such frauds.

The meeting took stock of the preparedness of the banks and other financial institutions in tackling the challenges arising from cyber security in the financial services sector, increasing trend of digital payment frauds, and deliberated on a focused approach to mitigate such cyber-attacks and frauds.


Courtesy: Business Lines Dt. 29th Nov 2023

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