cantankerous has previously reported the growing anger of the Irish government with RBS. In an unusually candid statement issued yesterday, Ireland’s central bank has expressed its growing impatience with the continuing and unresolved RBS IT fiasco:
28 June 2012
The Central Bank of Ireland is concerned by the unacceptable continuing delays by Ulster Bank in fully resolving its systems issues and the consequent impact on its customers. The Central Bank has been, and continues to be, in daily contact with Ulster Bank and its parent, Royal Bank of Scotland Group, since this issue first emerged on 20 June. The Deputy Governor met with Ulster Bank and RBS senior management earlier this week and spoke with the CEO of RBS earlier today to emphasise to him the importance of RBS addressing the continuing delays in resolving the technical issues which are impacting Ulster Bank customers.
The Central Bank is working with the UK Financial Services Authority and the Bank of England in investigating the root cause of the issue at the Group level and how this has impacted Ulster Bank’s payment systems.
RBS says the problems are 99% sorted. As cantankerous has previously said, 99% is not 100%. And its even worse if you bank with Ulster Bank in Northern Ireland or the Republic of Ireland, where Ulster Bank customers are facing their tenth day of being unable to access their own money. Jim Brown, the boss of Ulster Bank is claiming that the problems will be resolved by ‘the middle of next week’, missing yet another deadline. 99% or 100% resolved, cantankerous wonders, even if RBS hits this deadline? Jim Brown claims the deadline was missed because the problems were more complex than expected. Yet more evidence that this isn’t simply a slow data recovery by RBS, but rather that it is probably ‘making it up as it goes along‘ trying to recreate deleted or corrupted transactional data.
Of course, this unprecedented technical failure is not related to the RBS Board decision to sack more than one thousand of its most experienced staff, halve the size of the crucial support teams which manage the crucial daily operations of RBS and replace many of the staff with outsourced or offshore personnnel with far less experience. No, of course it isn’t. Much. Even though a catastrophic failure was predicted, RBS CEO Stephen Hester was warned by an MP, and Hester denied there was any issue.
And RBS and NatWest customers in England, Scotland and Wales are supposed to be satisfied with this:
RBS statement on technical issue26th June 2012
RBS and NatWest confirm that the update of customer account balances has cleared overnight, with the exception of a few specific sets of transactions.
What does that mean? Either the transactions are complete or they are not; balances are accurate or they are not; the recovery worked or it didn’t. Which ‘specific sets of transactions’? Does RBS have a clue what is going on? How did it happen? RBS needs to provide answers. Fast