Irish bank customers affected by IT system failures

Two Irish banks have been hit by separate outages, with customers unable to access accounts following IT problems.

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Two Irish banks have been affected by separate outages, with customers unable to access accounts following IT problems.

Customers and branch staff of Allied Irish Banks (AIB) and Permanent TSB were unable to access accounts on Tuesday according to the Irish Independent. Customers also claimed to be unable to use debit cards in shops, or access funds through ATMs.

The system failures occurred after both banks re-opened after Easter.

For Permanent TSB the outage came a day after the launch of a new account product, with 80 branches affected as online and telephone banking was disrupted. 

A similar situation was faced by AIB, with customers also unable to retrieve funds from accounts for a period of time. AIB told ComputerworldUK that it systems were “running as normal in about an hour”, but declined to provide any further information as to the nature of the IT problems.

State-owned AIB, which also has a presence in the UK market, uses IBM System z9 for its core banking system, running z/OS and using IBM DB2 as the core database. The IBM infrastructure was implemented during a major IT transformation project in 2008, involving the building of two new data centres, as the bankaimed to enable greater agility in meeting regulations and bringing products to market.

The bank also used Oracle’s Flexcube retail banking software, though this was subsequently ditched with the bank citing “serious technical problems”, with only 3,000 of a possible five million customers migrated to the new system before it reverted back to its existing banking software in 2010. AIB reached a £71.8 million settlement after claiming that it had “wasted money” on the Flexcube system.

Last year many Irish bank customers were affected by serious IT problems after system failures at RBS caused widespread disruption to services for a number of banks, including Ulster Bank.

In separate news, Dutch bank ING said that it suffered problems with its payments processing systems on Tuesday night, leading to complaints from its that online banking balances displayed inaccurate information. ING denied that a cyber attack was responsible, according to Reuters.

Another Dutch firm Rabobank, also reported problems on Wednesday, with customers experiencing problems requesting loans online.

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