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Kenya : Hackers steal Sh 30billion from Kenya’s financial institutions

Team arrested at least 16 suspects including of a former police officer who is also touted as an IT guru, Insiders (KRA-Kenya Revenue Authority People) and a hacker who has been stealing money from local banks electronically in conjunction with a ring of other international hackers.

This job is amalgamation of insiders and tools which they used to intrude into the system and hack. Police requested the court to allow to detain her for 20 days to conduct investigations. Police need unlimited access to technology tools at the banks to proceed.

Suspects had connected KRA server located on the third floor of Times Tower to the Afya office of former employee’s name Riaga.

  • Target: Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA), National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA), Saccos (Savings and Cooperative Societies) and the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC)
  • International contacts: Moldova, Belgium and France.
  • Tools: Insiders, key loggers, Remote Access Tools (RAT), Bitcoin (Cryptocurrency)
  • Investigating Unit (From Kenya): Special Crimes Prevention Unit, Flying Squad, Cyber-Crime Unit, Anti-Narcotics Unit

Breached into Safaricom worth : Kenyan Sh20,000.
Infiltrated NIC Bank’s system, demanding to be paid Sh6.2 million in bitcoins. They were also charged with stealing Sh2.88 million from NIC Bank.

They creates the software used by Savings and Cooperative Societies (Saccos). However, he leaves “backdoor” within the software which he uses to gain illegal access in the future. For example, Zeus Malware is a form of malicious software (Trojan) targets Microsoft Windows and is often used to steal financial data –More

Read about Bangladesh bank heist stole $81 million


Busted Russian scheme to hack Kenya IEBC & steal elections

  • A Kenyan and a Russian could be planning to hack into the IEBC (Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission) system to interfere with the elections
  • Police have arrested the Kenyan who is also a former DCI police officer and IT expert following communication between him and the Russian

About Hacker : Alex Mutungi Mutuma (28)

Described himself as a self-employed software developer who sells applications on Google Playstore for survival. Alex and his team who paralyzed banking CBS ; demanding Sh6.2 million in BTC & been accused of executing some mind-boggling heists. He said:

“Man I just feel like crap! I feel so disrespected. I have done everything for this girl…paid her school fees…applied jobs for her…even did an aptitude test for her till she got one… bought her a car…gave here [sic] money (in millions), but she isn’t satisfied,”. His fiancee was having an affair tried to commit suicide by slashing his wrist.


Well there myriad ways to coin term “Hacking” :It is (the art of) gaining of access (wanted or unwanted) to a computer and viewing, copying, or creating data (leaving a trace) without the intention of destroying data or maliciously harming the computer. Just a state of mind your perception.


Read about: ATM penetration Testing

Salami attack is when small attacks add up to one major attack that can go undetected due to the nature of this type of cyber-crime. It also known as salami slicing/penny shaving where the attacker uses an online database to seize the information of customers, that is bank/credit card details, deducting minuscule amounts from every account over a period of time.

How to identify the salami attack?

  • The only way to detect salami attack according to me is to perform rigorous white box testing by checking each and every line of code which is exhaustive but that’s the only way. This attack is not only on the banks but also on any entity where slicing can be performed and people are made unaware of the crime. Also those banks should advise customers on reporting any kind of money deduction that they aren’t aware that they were a part of.
  • PCI-DSS, Audit, VAPT
  • Information Rights Management

Phishing is the attempt to obtain sensitive information such as usernames, passwords, and credit card details (and sometimes, indirectly, money), often for malicious reasons, by masquerading as a trustworthy entity in an electronic communication. Have a look :



Current state of Kenya’s cyber security landscape

  • US $ 171m lost to cyber-crime in 2016 & this is expected to rise by 30% by the end of this year.
  • The report Technology, Media and Telecommunications Predictions 2017 ranked Kenya as one of the most vulnerable countries in terms of cyber security.

~ Deloitte

  • Most corporations in Kenya can’t tell if they were victims of cyber-attacks, a situation experts describe as “blissful ignorance”. And young, tech-savvy individuals are raking in billions from this ignorance.
  • average age of today’s cyber criminal is between 21 and 30. They do not engage in crime to escape poverty, but to get into opulence.


Cyber-crime is a complex yet relatively new phenomenon in the country. Cyber is not an individual property of any government, its fifth dimension where anybody who having skills into IT-Security and Hacking can attack anytime, they just need medium to accomplish their task. And Internet is very common to access remotely for communication and transferring information. Malwares, DDoS, Mobile threats, cryptocurrency are some top emerging cyber threats. There is NO such tools which can prevent from these cyber threats or attack, only proper awareness would help to reduce such crimes.

Highlights :

  • Insider threats refer to fraud involving information or employee abuse of IT systems and information.
  • Mobile money in Kenya has experienced numerous attacks through social engineering, use of malware and account personifications.
  • Technical training of employees is insufficient. The increase in the number of home grown cyber criminals in Kenya.
  • Security professionals are struggling to demonstrate business value to senior management.
  • Low level of security awareness, Lack of practical regulatory guidance from industry regulators and government.
  • Only 3% of reported cybercrimes are successfully prosecuted.

Country Need to Cyber Safety:

  • Awareness and Training
  • Continuous Monitoring and Log Analysis
  • Vulnerability Assessment & Patch Management
  • Continuous Risk Assessment and Treatment
  • Managed Services and Independent Reviews


For Detailed slide : Check

Top priority to address cyber-crime:

  • Legislative frameworks on cyber security – policies, laws, regulations
  • Capacity building in cyber security
  • Enhanced monitoring of national infrastructures
  • Promote an information society as an enabler for sustainable development
  • Cyber Awareness campaigns amongst all stakeholders
  • Investment in research and development

In Kenya National Computer Incident Response Team Coordination Centre (National KE-CIRT/CC) :

The Kenya Information and Communications Act, 1998, mandates the Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) to develop a national cyber security management framework through the establishment of a national Computer Incident Response Team (CIRT).

The Communications Authority of Kenya setup the National Kenya Computer Incident Response Team Coordination Center (National KE-CIRT/CC) whose mandate is to coordinate response and manage cyber security incidents nationally and to collaborate with relevant actors locally, regionally and internationally.

To report vulnerability : Go here 

To report incident : Go here

For Cyber Security Tips : Go here 

For more:  http://www.ke-cirt.go.ke/ 



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