Glitch takes down Barclays account access

An IT glitch at Barclays this weekend left thousands of bank account holders unable to make purchases or withdraw cash.

Customers began experiencing problems around Saturday lunchtime. Barclays’ telephone help desk was soon flooded with calls from customers complaining that could not withdraw money from ATMs and or make payments with their cards. Some customers were also unable to make transactions over Barclays’ telephone and Internet banking services.

Barclays claims that all of problems were resolved within 20 minutes. However, Reuters reported that some customers were still having trouble accessing online banking services as late as 20:15 on Saturday.

The bank has not elaborated on the cause of the error. According to The Press Association "it is thought to have been triggered by a power failure".

Only last week, Barclays announced a two-year deal to outsource the management and maintenance of 550 of its ATMs to NCR. Services provided by the US company include incident management and help desk.

Barclays also found itself in trouble with US prosecutors this month. It was fined $298 million after it was judged a UK payment processing centre altered data to disguise $500 million in cash transfers from governments including Burma, Libya and Cuba to avoid US sanctions.

Peter Done

Peter Done is managing director of Peninsula Business Services, the personnel and employment law consultancy he set up having already built a successful betting shop business.

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