Did you hear about that ‘systems failure’ at Bank of Ireland? No, no, not the overdraft ‘error‘ – that was this week’s error.
I’m referring to last week’s ‘error’ involving ATMs.
I know, I know, it’s difficult to keep up with the ‘systems failure industry’ in Irish banking.
Anyway, last week’s episode involved what RTE described as silly people walking away from ATM machines without their card or money.
Here’s the RTE report (My emphasis).
But in 2005, Bank of Ireland was upgrading its anti-fraud technology on its ATMs and somehow neglected to reactivate the ‘automatic re-crediting’ process, so if you did forget your money, the machine took it back but your account wasn’t re-credited.
In October 2009, the problem was fixed, but during those four years there were tens of thousands of people who forgot their money.
Half of those people realised something had gone wrong and got in touch with the bank to reclaim their money.
But 44,000 didn’t: 14,000 of them were Bank of Ireland account holders, another 29,000 were other bank account holders using Bank of Ireland ATMs.
Today €1.3m has been returned by Bank of Ireland to its customers; another €1.7m is being given to other banks to return to their customers who were affected.
A lovely spokesperson from the bank gently explained that people did tend to get distracted by phone calls or their children – silly, silly people.
But never mind Bank of Ireland has come to the rescue.
Customers are to be fully reimbursed, enhanced procedures have been introduced to ensure this ‘silly mistake’ never occurs again, and, every customer is to be issued with a free, gold plated, apology.
We don’t have a financial regulator in Ireland but if we did the following question might have been put to Bank of Ireland.
Why did it take you four whole years to act on this ‘error’ when all during that four years thousands upon thousands of customers were telling you that the automatic re-crediting process was dysfunctional or to put it another way.
Why did you allow this situation to continue for four years when you obviously knew there was a problem that was resulting in significant loss to customers?
We don’t have a financial regulator in Ireland but if we did Bank of Ireland would have been heavily fined and the person/s responsible for the four year ‘error’ would be under serious investigation by police.
We don’t have a financial regulator in Ireland but if we did consumers would not be subject to a well established ‘system failure industry’ that ‘somehow’ always enriches the banks and impoverishes the customer.
Some bored and anonymous official within the joke organisation that masquerades as a financial regulator pushed the by now well worn button marked ‘standard press release drivel’ and out spewed:
The Financial Regulator expects all firms to have appropriate systems and control in place to prevent errors, or rectify them quickly.
Hey, did you hear about the latest bank ‘systems failure’? It involves an ‘error’ in overdrafts….
Bank of Ireland
So called Financial Regulator