MAS refuses to reveal action taken against StanChart

SINGAPORE — The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has taken “appropriate supervisory action” against Standard Chartered Bank (StanChart) for last year’s theft of bank statements belonging to 647 of its private banking clients.

However, in the central bank’s response to media queries yesterday, it did not disclose the details of its action against StanChart.

“The MAS generally does not disclose details of its supervisory actions,” it said.

Responding to TODAY’s queries, the police said investigations are still in progress and declined to reveal if any arrests have been made.

Last December, it was revealed that 647 StanChart premium clients had their February 2013 statements stolen from a server of Fuji Xerox Singapore — the bank’s printing vendor. StanChart had said it did not find any unauthorised transactions resulting from the incident.

The theft was discovered only after the police found files with data on the StanChart clients on a laptop seized from the alleged “Messiah” hacker James Raj Arokiasamy.

The police also visited the standalone Fuji Xerox printing facility, where statements for StanChart’s private banking clients were printed, and seized a server and desktop.

In response to media queries, a StanChart spokesperson yesterday said the bank has further strengthened both its internal and external controls and processes to prevent similar accidents.

The spokesperson added that StanChart will continue to work closely with the MAS to identify gaps in its third-party outsourcing process and further tighten its guidelines.

The MAS reiterated that it takes a serious view on the safeguarding of customer information.

It also reminded all financial institutions to ensure that “robust controls are in place, including for operations that have been outsourced to third party service providers”.

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