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RBI appoints Ganesh Kumar as executive director for IT and payments systems

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has appointed Ganesh Kumar as the executive director who will be responsible for the department of information technology, department of payment and settlement systems and department of external investments and operations.

He will be succeeding Chandan Sinha. Kumar joined the RBI in 1984 and is a career central banker, has served in the areas of payment systems, supervision, foreign exchange, information technology and Government and Bank Accounts in the Bank. Prior to being promoted as Executive director, Kumar was chief general manager-in-charge, Department of Information Technology in the Reserve Bank.

Kumar has a masters degree in business administration from Cochin University of Science and Technology and also holds a diploma in management from IIM, Bangalore, besides diplomas in Law and Banking.

Kumar’s appointment comes at a time when the number of financial cyber crimes in the country is increasing. For the year 2015-16, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) reported 16,468 cyber crimes related to ATM, debit card, credit card and net banking frauds. The number of frauds reported by the RBI were 13,083 in the year 2014-15 and 9,500 in the year 2013-14.

Most recently, during the WannaCry ransomware attack, banks had to close several ATMs as well. Many of ATMs are still running on the Windows XP operating system and CERT-In had to issue an advisory that could be prone to attack so as precautionary measure banks running such ATMs refrained from feeding cash,

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Meanwhile, the RBI set up the Reserve Bank Information Technology Pvt Ltd (ReBIT) to take care of its IT requirements, including the cyber security needs of the bank and its regulated entities.

The RBI’s latest executive director will also have to look into the overhaul of the existing wallet guidelines. There are several issues with new payments systems such as the UPI, for starters, there is no refund API. This week, deputy governor SS Mundra was rooting for bank account portability via the UPI and Aadhaar.


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