E-bank­ing glitches harm­ing cus­tomers

The Press and Journal (Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire) - - MONEY - BY VICKY SHAW

Cus­tomers are be­ing left “cash­less and cut off ” by un­ac­cept­able IT fail­ures in the fi­nan­cial ser­vices sec­tor, ac­cord­ing to MPs.

A new re­port from the UK Gov­ern­ment’s trea­sury select com­mit­tee says on­line bank­ing fail­ures should not be tol­er­ated. It also main­tains that the cur­rent level and fre­quency of dis­rup­tion, and the harm it causes to con­sumers, is not ac­cept­able.

With bank branches and cash ma­chines dis­ap­pear­ing, cus­tomers are in­creas­ingly ex­pected to rely on on­line bank­ing ser­vices. How­ever these fa­cil­i­ties have been sig­nif­i­cantly dis­rupted due to IT fail­ures, harm­ing cus­tomers left with­out ac­cess to their fi­nan­cial ser­vices, the com­mit­tee said.

Firms must re­solve cus­tomer com­plaints and award com­pen­sa­tion quickly, the com­mit­tee added.

Fi­nan­cial sec­tor levies may need to be in­creased to en­sure the Fi­nan­cial Con­duct Au­thor­ity, Pru­den­tial Reg­u­la­tion Au­thor­ity and Bank of Eng­land are suf­fi­ciently staffed and can re­solve com­plaints and award com­pen­sa­tion quickly, the re­port states.

Steve Baker, the in­quiry’s lead mem­ber, said: “The num­ber of IT fail­ures that have oc­curred in the fi­nan­cial ser­vices sec­tor, in­clud­ing TSB, Visa and Bar­clays, and the harm caused to con­sumers is un­ac­cept­able.”

Steve Baker MP

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