RAB arrests six for hacking and stealing Tk 27m from BRTA, DESCO

The hackers created fake receipts and stole the funds, the RAB says

Senior Correspondentbdnews24.com
Published : 22 May 2023, 05:30 PM
Updated : 22 May 2023, 05:30 PM

The Rapid Action Battalion has arrested six people for their alleged involvement in stealing about Tk 27 million by hacking into the payment gateway of Bangladesh Road Transport Authority and the website of Dhaka Electric Supply Company.

While the servers of BRTA and its technical support company, Computer Network Systems Limited, show updated car registration papers with the fees paid, the bank denies receiving any payment, RAB spokesman Khandaker Al Moin said at a press conference on Monday.

In this way, the gang embezzled around Tk 12 million from 389 transactions in the past one month, he said.

Last November, the same group hacked into DESCO's website and created transaction IDs to steal around Tk 15 million through mobile banking, according to Moin.

BRTA receives payments through the bank or mobile banking channel via CNS's gateway. However, the hackers were able to update customers' vehicle papers on BRTA's servers without making the necessary government fee payments by hacking into the payment gateway, Moin said.

Following a complaint lodged by CNS Limited, RAB-4 conducted raids on Sunday night and arrested six people identified as Md Shahriar Islam, 26, Azim Hossain, 27, Shimul Bhuiyan, 32, Rubel Mahmud, 33, Faisal Ahmed, 23, and Anisur Rahman, 23, from different locations, including Mirpur, Kafrul, and Gazipur Sadar.

http://bdnews24.com was unable to obtain a comment from BRTA Chairman Nur Mohammad Majumder as his office said that he was busy.

Shahriar, the mastermind behind the operation, had initially enrolled in a software engineering programme at a private university but did not complete his studies, the RAB said.

“Before that, he had worked for multiple IT companies, which enabled him to familiarise himself with payment response codes used in mobile banking or online banking systems.”

“At one point, he developed his own software specifically for fraudulent purposes, allowing him to hack into CNS's payment gateway and generate fake money receipts,” Moin said.

Another arrestee, Azim, was responsible for providing counterfeit money receipts to Shimul. Azim had enrolled in a college in Dhaka, pursuing a bachelor's degree in social science, but did not finish his studies.