Banks hike IT spending to combat hackers


Posted at Jun 21 2017 04:30 PM | Updated as of Jun 21 2017 04:35 PM

Two of the largest banks in the country on Wednesday have "significantly increased" their information technology infrastructure in a bid to prevent hacking and online breaches.

"Last year alone, all our IT expenses was over P5.3 billion. That's almost 22 million (pesos) every working day," Cezar Consing, Bank of the Philippine Islands president, told lawmakers during a hearing conducted by the Senate Committee on Banks, Financial Institutions and Currencies.

Henry Sy's Banco de Oro (BDO) said its banking security centers are monitoring the bank's systems 24/7.

The country's largest bank said it is also reviewing hacker technologies worldwide in a bid to equip its automated teller machines with anti-skimming devices.

"We are also engaged with a number of vendors and solution providers so it's not just BDO looking out for BDO," Ricardo Martin, BDO Information Technology Group head, said.

"The increase in expenditure in IT is in recognition of the fact that the environment is getting more challenging that we have to try to stay ahead," Consing added.

BPI and BDO officials were summoned to the Senate weeks after the banks were hounded by an internal glitch and possible skimming attempts.