British banks suffer from third party IT glitch

Customers of Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), Tesco and Nationwide Building Society were unable to pay credit card bills and access account information yesterday after US payments company TSYS suffered an IT outage.

Customers of the affected banks were unable to view credit card information through their mobile banking applications and digital banking accounts after TSYS had been hit by a “hardware-related issue”. The firm apologised in a statement to the Financial Times on Tuesday evening.

Despite the bank’s service now returning to normal and the issue resolved, some customers were unable to pay their bills by a 20 August deadline, highlighting the third party risk associated with outsourcing banking services.

Customers first reported issues with accessing their information via mobile banking early on Monday morning, with service outages continuing on Tuesday.

In a statement, RBS explained: “Our third party service provider has advised that this issue, which impacted a number of credit card suppliers, was resolved last night.

“Customer credit card information is now available in our Mobile App and Online Banking. We apologise for any inconvenience this has caused and we will ensure no customers are left out of pocket as a result."

Posting on a social media platform, Tesco Bank said: “Our mobile app, online banking and telephony services are now working as normal following the issue which has impacted these services intermittently. We will continue to monitor this and are sorry for any inconvenience.”

A Nationwide spokesperson commented: “Nationwide’s credit cards are managed by a third party.

"For a short period yesterday, an issue at the third-party supplier meant that customers could not access account information. Throughout the period, credit card customers could still use their cards in shops and online. Service was fully restored by late morning yesterday (20 August) at which point customers could service their accounts as normal.”

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