The Postbank has been left with no option but to replace 12 million bank cards for account holders and social grants beneficiaries after the bank discovered a security breach. The Postbank master key was stolen by employees.
Sunday Times reports that breach resulted from the printing of the bank’s encrypted master key in plain, unencrypted digital language at the Postbank’s old data centre in the Pretoria city centre.
The master key was stolen by the employees of the bank and it is going to be costly to replace the card, an estimate put at R1 billion.
The banking system master key is a 36-digit code that allows a user to have control over accounts and to be able to change account balances and manipulate transactions.
Social grant beneficiaries with the bank are around 8 to 10 million and they are the most affected. The criminals also have access to over 1 million other post bank accounts
According to reports produced by the bank seen by Sunday Times, from March 2018 and December 2019, the Postbank lost R56 million stolen from bank cards of social grant beneficiaries to criminals who generated the master key.