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HSBC suffers major online banking failure

HSBC customers unable to access online banking services as the UK bank suffers internal technical issue.

HSBC customers have been unable to use online banking services for two days as a result of an internal technical issue.

The problem began on Monday 4th January when customers began experiencing problems logging on to online and mobile banking services. The mobile banking service was available again later on Monday but customers were still unable to log into online banking services.

The bank then reported on Twitter that online services were back.  “We apologise for today’s ( 4/1/2016) service disruption and thank you for your patience. Please be advised that online services are back up and running.” However, on Tuesday morning (5/1/2016) HSBC said the problem remained.

HSBC said it had identified the problem and was working on fixing it, according to its Twitter feed. “We have identified an internal technical issue with our online banking services and are working very hard to resolve the issue,” the bank tweeted.

HSBC promised customers that they would not lose money as a result of the services being unavailable. “We will ensure customers do not lose out as a result of this issue. Any fees customers incur as a result of this outage will be waived,” it said.

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John Hackett, HSBC COO said: "We profoundly apologise for any inconvenience this has caused.

"There is a complex technical issue with our internet banking systems, and our IT team has been working non-stop since yesterday morning to find a solution. This has involved many tests, diagnostics and trial runs. We are getting closer to solving the problem, but are not there yet. We can, however, confirm this is not a cyber-attack or any other malicious act."

In August an IT failure at HSBC led to 275,000 payments not being processed by the bank’s BACS system.

The problem meant that businesses using HSBC business accounts to make payments have been unable to transfer funds.

HSBC also had problems in the US in April last year when it had to inform some customers in the US that their mortgage account information was inadvertently made accessible via the internet.

The bank discovered at the end of March 2015 that 685 mortgage customers in New Hampshire in the US were affected.

The reliability and security of online financial services are essential as customers increasingly go online first and problems will have detrimental effects of customer confidence in banks.

According to the research from Forrester which involved 3,000 people, 28% use mobile banking, with 73% now banking online, compared with 69% a year ago.



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