Hunt on for the heist bug

US firm FireEye believes the malware still in BB network; FBI to join probe

US cyber security firm FireEye, which is charging Bangladesh Bank $400 an hour to probe the $101 million heist, is hunting for a malware that it believes is still hiding in the bank's network.

The firm installed a software programme in all computers at the BB a week after the heist. The software is being used to find out the path the hackers used to plant the malware in the BB network.

FireEye investigators will monitor the computers for 600 hours from Washington before submitting a final probe report in two weeks, according to BB officials.

The firm is getting $400 an hour for the service.

The forensic investigators believe that a malware is still there in the central bank's system, and they are trying to track it down.

Besides, they are trying to detect the location from where the hackers breached the BB system, said the officials.

FireEye, one of the largest cyber security firms in the globe, and World Informatix Cyber Security are probing together the theft from the BB account with the New York Federal Reserve Bank.

The two companies submitted an interim probe report to the government on March 16.

World Informatix founder Rakesh Asthana is working as an IT consultant to the BB under a World Bank project.

He was given an additional responsibility to probe the theft as soon as the BB came to know about the biggest cyber heist in the world. He later hired FireEye to help him in the task.

On Wednesday, Finance Minister AMA Muhith said the new BB governor would decide on how long Asthana would work.

Fazle Kabir, who joined as governor yesterday, didn't touch on the issue.

However, Subhankar Saha, an executive director and spokesperson for the BB, said Asthana has been appointed for two years under an IT governance project.

Apart from performing his core duties, the former WB cyber security expert is carrying out a forensic probe, he said.

“The central bank's IT team is working with him.

“The project in which Asthana is working will continue,” added Subhankar.

Seeking anonymity, a BB official said the Criminal Investigation Department is carrying out its probe into the heist, relying largely on the findings of the interim report of the two companies.

In their final report, FireEye and World Informatix would make recommendations on how to make the BB's network system more secure, added the official.


The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is going to team up with the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) to investigate the heist at Bangladesh Bank.

The decision came following a meeting between an FBI agent and members of CID at the latter's headquarters in the capital's Malibagh.

The meeting discussed the field of assistance in tracing the hackers and recovering the stolen money by identifying the financially beneficiaries from the heist, said CID Additional Deputy Inspector General Shah Alam after the meeting.  

The FBI agent left the CID office without talking to the press.