Natwest and RBS 'working round the clock' to fix technical problems

 

A banking group said it is "working round the clock" to fix technical problems for NatWest customers before the weekend begins.

Large numbers of customers have been affected by the hitches since Wednesday, and Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) Group said that many will still only see yesterday's balances showing up on their accounts today.

Angry customers have vented their frustration about the problems, which are also affecting Royal Bank of Scotland and Ulster Bank users, with some finding that they had supermarket deliveries stopped and others having holidays or home purchases disrupted.

Account balances are not being updated properly overnight, meaning that credit and debit payments are not showing up as quickly as they should, although an RBS Group spokeswoman said the money is "in the system".

She said that even if people go into their branch, they may not see the most up-to-date information on their balances, although staff are "geared up" to help customers who are having problems using their accounts.

Fears have been raised that thousands of customers could be hit with penalty charges if their regular household bill payments such as mortgage payments are affected.

The banking group has promised that no one will be out of pocket and the spokeswoman said that anyone who incurs such a penalty as a result of the problems should contact their branch.

Asked if the problems would be resolved by the weekend, the RBS Group spokeswoman said: "Our technicians are working round the clock. It is obviously a priority. That's what we're hoping to achieve."

NatWest has more than 7.5 million personal banking customers, but the spokeswoman said it was difficult to say how many have been affected as it was not possible to know when they were expecting payments into their accounts.

However, Ulster Bank said that around 100,000 of its customers have been affected by the same issues.

The problem reportedly arose after staff tried to install a software update on RBS's payment processing system, but ended up corrupting it.

RBS Group could not confirm this, but said they were "making progress" with the original technical issue.

With the bank's advertising slogan Helpful Banking attracting the attention of many tweeters, there were numerous messages on Twitter about wages not appearing in accounts or the prospect of being hit with late payment charges.

One user wrote: "£natwest what are u doing! I'm off on holiday today meant to get paid today so where's my money? helpful banking ay!"

Another said: "Due to complete on flat purchase today. All the money missing in cyberspace. Stressful enough without this, thanks £natwest."

First-time buyer Raul Poddy, 30, told BBC News that he, his pregnant wife and their one-year-old chid came close to spending a night in an empty home because of the problems.

He said that his family were due to complete the purchase of their first home but, because solicitors could not check that funds had been transferred, the keys were not immediately released.

They faced "throwing down a mattress" to spend the night in their empty, rented home in Durham until the problem was resolved, but the keys were later released, allowing them to move in.

Mother-of-two Lisa Browne said she had tried to get Tesco to deliver a weekly food shop to her home but the store said her NatWest bank card had been declined.

She said she was relying on her salary going into her account to keep her in credit and told the Daily Mail: "I'm really annoyed."

More than 1,000 NatWest branches in major towns and cities were kept open until 7pm last night and opened early at 8am today.

A statement placed by NatWest on its website today told customers: "Unfortunately we are once again experiencing technical issues with our systems and account balances have not updated properly overnight.

"This means where money has gone into a customer's account, there may be a delay in it appearing on their balance.

"We can assure our customers that this problem is strictly of a technical nature and we continue to work hard to resolve this.

"We also recognise this is an unacceptable inconvenience for our customers, for which we apologise."

A spokeswoman for UK Payments Administration, which oversees payments generally, said the problem was not a central one and therefore it did not appear to have affected other banks.

But anyone expecting payments from people or businesses which bank with NatWest and RBS could encounter delays due to the technical issues at their end, she said.

PA

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Life and Style
A still from a scene cut from The Interview showing North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's death.
tech
Voices
'That's the legal bit done. Now on to the ceremony!'
voicesThe fight for marriage equality isn't over yet, says Siobhan Fenton
Life and Style
Approaching sale shopping in a smart way means that you’ll get the most out of your money
life + styleSales shopping tips and tricks from the experts
Arts and Entertainment
Bianca Miller and Katie Bulmer-Cooke are scrutinised by Lord Sugar's aide Nick Hewer on The Apprentice final
tvBut Bianca Miller has taken on board his comments over pricing
News
in picturesWounded and mangy husky puppy rescued from dump
News
newsAstonishing moment a kangaroo takes down a drone
Life and Style
Duchess of Cambridge standswith officials outside of the former wartime spy centre in Bletchley Park
tech
News
people
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Ashdown Group: IT Support Technician - 12 Month Fixed Term - Shrewsbury

£17000 - £20000 per annum: Ashdown Group: IT Helpdesk Support Technician - 12 ...

The Jenrick Group: Maintenance Planner

£28000 - £32000 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: Maintenance...

The Jenrick Group: World Wide PLC Service Engineer

£30000 - £38000 per annum + pesion + holidays: The Jenrick Group: World Wide S...

The Jenrick Group: Project Manager

£35000 per annum + Pension+Bupa: The Jenrick Group: We are recruiting for an e...

Day In a Page

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'