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Friday, March 11, 2016

Bangladesh Central Bank Heist Noticed Because Of Spelling Error

Hackers sent nearly three dozen requests to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York to move money from the Bangladesh bank's account there. The hackers got away with more than $80 million. (Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

Hackers sent nearly three dozen requests to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York to move money from the Bangladesh bank’s account there. The hackers got away with more than $80 million. (Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

A spelling mistake during an online bank heist last month helped put a stop to the theft, according to bank officials. The hackers broke into the website for Bangladesh’s central bank, and stole codes that allowed them to request financial transfers from the Bangladesh bank account at the Federal Reserve of New York.

More than $80 million was stolen in four transfers, but the fifth transfer to Sri Lanka’s Shalika Foundation was held up because the world foundation was spelled “fandation,” and that caught the attention of Deutsche Bank, which was involved in the transfer. Here & Now‘s Meghna Chakrabarti speaks with Mike Regan of Bloomberg Gadfly about what happened.

Correction: An earlier version of the text above misstated the amount stolen. It was $80 million, not $80 billion.

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Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

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