Wellington, New Zealand-The Central Bank of New Zealand said on Sunday that its unidentified hacker had compromised one of its data systems and that the hacker might have access to sensitive business and personal information.
The Wellington-based bank said a third-party file-sharing service used by the Reserve Bank of New Zealand to share and store sensitive information has been illegally accessed.
Governor Adrian Orr said violations have been contained. He said that the bank’s core functions “maintain sound and operational.”
“We are working closely with domestic and international cybersecurity experts and other relevant agencies as part of our investigation and response to this malicious attack,”
“The nature and scope of the information that may be accessed is still being determined, but it may include some sensitive commercial and personal information,” Orr added.
The system has been secured and taken offline until the bank completes its preliminary investigation.
Orr said: “It will take some time to understand the full implications of this vulnerability, and we are working with system users who may have access to its information.”
The bank declined to answer questions sent via email, seeking more details.
It is not clear when the violation occurred, or if there are signs of who is responsible, and in which country the file sharing service is located.
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In the past year, several major organizations in New Zealand have become targets of network interference, including the New Zealand Stock Exchange, whose servers were shut down for nearly a week in August.
Dave Parry, a professor of computer science at the University of Auckland, told Radio New Zealand that another government might be behind the bank’s data breach.
“Ultimately, if you look at it from a similar crime perspective, the government agency will not pay your ransom or other expenses, so you may be interested in working from government to government.