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NatWest tech woes return; Nationwide has own problems

26 July 2012  |  8376 views  |  2 call centre Customer assitant

NatWest has confirmed customers are having "issues" with online banking services and debit cards. Meanwhile, Nationwide Building Society says that some of its customers have had debit card payments deducted from their accounts twice.

Just weeks after the disastrous tech problems that hit millions of customers at the bank and its sisters RBS and Ulster Bank, NatWest has confirmed the new problem on Twitter:


Online banking services have been hit as well as ATM withdrawals using NatWest debit cards although POS transactions appear to be unaffected.

Separately, Nationwide - which boasted that it experienced a surge in new customers off the back off the original NatWest/RBS meltdown - says that "human error" means that card transactions affecting more than 700,000 customers made on Tuesday were taken again on Wednesday.

The bank is promising to correct balances overnight and refund any related charges and, as best practice now dictates, has taken to Twitter for a PR blitz in an effort to mollify disgruntled customers, many of whom were pushed into the red by the error.


Update: By Friday morning, NatWest claimed that its online banking services and debit card transactions were back to normal while Nationwide said that customers who had payments debited twice had been reimbursed.

Comments: (2)

A Finextra member
A Finextra member 26 July, 2012, 14:39

Sounds like some basic housekeeping stuff has been omitted - like a duplicate batch check process that is SOP  to stop this 'human error' occuring... really the human and inexcusable error is not having a process to prevent the error happening.... This stuff is data processing 101 as our american colleagues would say....

Its a schoolboy error almost as bad as confusing the North and South Korean flags.... Big apologies there too!!!  

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Keith Appleyard
Keith Appleyard - available for hire - Bromley 26 July, 2012, 15:53

I can remember 20 plus years ago having checks on duplicate files (or tapes as we called them then).

If they contained the same number of records, and matched on a hash total of the monetary value, as a previously processed file, then they were undoubtedly a duplicate.

This worked fine until one month we had a file from one of the large Insurance companies, who hadn't managed to sell a single new policy in the month, nor have anyone cancel, and they hadn't changed any of the Premiums, so lo and behold it did match on both record count & financial amount, yet it wasn't a true duplicate.

Then we went back to the drawing board - stripping out a single record to get the control totals to differ so that we could get the file through.

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