Who is blocking what?

I have a problem with identifying myself.  Again.  And I’ve come to the conclusion that if we haven’t yet reached a point where it’s harder for me than for a competent fraudster to prove my identity, we can’t have far to go!

Specifically, I need to provide proof of identity by means of a bank statement.  Not an electronic one, which is all I get.  This is in order to open a new account elsewhere, that’ll pay relatively decent interest.

OK, ask at my local agency.  No, they can’t supply it, but suggest I call their call centre.

Try the call centre (and navigate through a voice-driven system that is long but at least works surprisingly well).  They can send an interim statement (on headed paper, so *hopefully* OK), but a full one will cost a tenner.  Probably worth it in the circumstances, but …

It’s the end of the month, so my regular statement should be due.  If I go online and amend my options to receive paper statements, it’s free.  Simple enough.

Except …

The system just hangs when I try to submit the request.  Dammit, now I recollect it doing the same thing repeatedly over about a week when I tried to view my full creditcard statement (which is mid-January).  Hmmm …

All this while I’m on the phone to the call centre.  They can’t change my options for me, and tell me to go back to my branch.  Grrr ….

Plan 3, get it up on the pocket-puter, and go down to the branch with that.  Try resubmitting a few times as I walk down the street.

And lo … suddenly it works, acknowledges my request!

What had changed?  I’d just walked out of range of my wifi, and submitted over the ‘phone network (and the different IP address didn’t log me out – so at least something was right)!  Presumably all that’s changed is that I was accessing them through a different route, and it suddenly works!

I have something slightly similar with some Yahoo sites, where access from my IP just hangs (this has not always been the case), but it works fine if I go through a proxy.  What gives?

Posted on January 28, 2010, in identity, rants. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. For a long time you couldn’t login to Elance via a Squid proxy using Firefox because the Javascript they used caused Firefox to generate invalid POST requests which Squid quite reasonably ditched.

    My guess a (no longer) transparent proxy and someone doing something overly complicated on the server side.

    Virgin broke a load of our stuff at work by trying to “proxy everything” for their users (whilst applying some sort of content filtering courtesy of the Internet Watch nutters).

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