Online banking failure

I’ve been banking online for quite a few years with generally good results.  But I’ve just run up against the limits to it when I tried to access the information to transfer my cash ISA to another provider.  The account number is not available online, for bogus “security” reasons!  And when one thing fails, it seems everything falls apart.

Well, not quite everything: I was able to use an online messaging facility to get an answer after 48 hours.  But with lots of gratuitous hurdles on the way.  The followup online message I just sent them should be self-explanatory (it was slightly shortened to get within their 1000-character limit, so I had to lose things like the initial Thank You).

I regard a paper trail as a high risk, so I welcome paperless banking.

Paperless banking fails when I cannot access essential information online.  Doubly so when [bank] has closed our local agency so I have no branch access as backup!  Even if you blank out numbers in the overview, some means of accessing them is clearly essential!

Your phone service proved worse than useless.  I gave up at the point where it required me to enter the very account number I was trying to find out (surely a far bigger security risk than anything online, since that would have disclosed the number in an ultra-easy-to-read form over an unencrypted medium)!  In the absence of an option to speak to a human and identify myself using other information (such as my [current] account), this online message facility was my only option within your system.

Finally, this message service is defective.  I composed a reply only to lose it when the system erroneously logged me out.  It presented me a dialogue box from which I selected the option to stay logged in, but that led to the worst kind of failure: when I hit “send” it invited me to log back in and my message was lost without warning.

Grrrr ….

Posted on May 7, 2012, in banking, rants, security. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. I know who the culprits are and I’ve never forgiven them for closing the local agency. The agency was excellent and I used it many times. By contrast the “service” I received in their Exeter city centre branch was slow, unhelpful and discourteous. I still have a few products with this outfit, but I don’t like them very much and find your experience chimes with my low expectations of them. Ironically they ran a TV ad a few years back bragging about how much better they are that a typical high street bank (the storyboard was roughly thus – the typical bank says “no”, puts obstacles in one’s way etc – of course [you know who] would never do such things would they?). In fact the service I received from them was exactly in line with the poor behaviour they parodied in their ad.

  2. You bank with them why?

  3. Because the alternatives are, in my experience, worse?

  4. …and the process of moving accounts between providers can be a severe pain in itself, so if the deal’s not too bad one tends to stay put.

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