'FIU data was leaked via a bot' - Governor Naseer

Governor Ahmed Naseer on Monday revealed that the central bank's Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU)'s database was leaked by a bot uploaded into the database.

Governor Naseer was summoned to the parliament over accusations made against him by former head of FIU, Abdulla Ashraf.

During the meeting, Governor Naseer made accusations of his own against Ashraf, stating that Ashraf was changed to another post after it was noticed that Ashraf was not fulfilling his responsibilities as the FIU head, and over suspicions that the unit's information were being leaked.

After Ashraf was transferred to another post, it became evident that a bot had been uploaded into the FIU database, said Naseer.

"The data was being leaked to a group created on Telegram", said Naseer.

He did not give further information on the 'group'.

Naseer further noted that Ashraf continued to view FIU documents through MMA's intranet for four months after he was transferred from FIU.

The governor was asked why an employee with huge allegations against him was allowed to continue working at a senior position at the central bank.

In response, Naseer said while Ashraf was trained by MMA, he was transferred to another department where his expertise could be utilized despite his failure to fulfill his responsibilities as FIU head.

Ashraf, whose area of expertise is law, is currently working at the MMA department tasked with drafting laws on payment gateway systems.

The Governor said that data leaks were noticed after Ashraf was transferred, however, he did not wish to take action against Ashraf based on suspicions alone.

"We have conducted a complete internal review and forwarded it to the police. Further steps can be taken only after an investigative authority decides there are criminal offences involved", said Naseer.