How hackers cashed out $300K from ATMs in India via ATM jackpotting

According to a recent cybersecurity report, a hacking group specializing in ATM compromise in India has struck again, managing to extract the equivalent of up to $300,000 USD through the abuse of a weakness using the popular Man-in-The-Middle (MiTM) attack variant.

The information was confirmed by a Kolkata police spokesman, who even added that the estimated amount of losses could increase in the coming hours.

This is one more example of the use of hacking techniques to lead to a jackpotting scenario, the most popular attack against ATMs. This attack can be deployed in multiple ways and has generated millions of dollars in losses at banking institutions around the world.

These attacks reportedly occurred on May 19, just days after the hacking of at least three ATMs in Bowbazar, Bengal and Beniapukur. The operating company of these machines also reported two new incidents on May 22.

For their part, the authorities theorize that the operators of these attacks are from Bengal and deployed this malicious operation in Kolkata within a period of between 15 and 20 days. The attacks only require about 30 minutes and allow hackers to extract money from machines in small amounts up to 90 consecutive times.   

A specialized e-fraud unit of the local government is investigating the case, although they mention that it is becoming such a recurring problem in India that the investigation may take longer than expected. It should be recalled that a few months ago the authorities managed to shoot down a similar operation, making some arrests but finding multiple limitations in the process.

To learn more about information security risks, malware variants, vulnerabilities and information technologies, feel free to access the International Institute of Cyber Security (IICS) websites.