Westpac outage leaves customers stranded


wespacFURIOUS Westpac customers have blasted the bank after being locked out of their accounts for almost three days, leaving some unable to buy food.

Mobile and online banking services were hit by a technical glitch on Friday, throwing thousands of Australians’ long weekend plans in to disarray.

One customer requested urgent help on Monday night, pleading with the bank that a property transaction was at risk if she was not able to transfer funds.

“I have to transfer a large down payment for a property purchase within 24h and I cannot contact you via the international number as it is not working,” she wrote.

Others said they were unable to buy food, medication and basic essentials over the weekend.

“I am trying to access my money so that I can buy food but I don’t know all of my account numbers off by heart, so I cant use phone banking — what is going on?” Jack Lewis wrote, adding: “ I am leaving this bank immediately.”

Customers reported long wait times on the phone to Westpac’s customer service line, with some saying they were hung up on or played a message stating that the line was closed.

“Yes well there is no point calling because you cannot get hold of anyone — how much longer do we have to wait?” Nerida Hansen wrote at lunchtime on Tuesday.

“I have been trying to work since yesterday morning and can’t do my accounts without logging in.”

Westpac’s social media team posted to Facebook on Monday night, writing that the bank was aware that “a limited number of people” were having trouble.

“We’re continuing to work on access for those customers not yet able to log in,” the post said, advising those who needed help to phone the bank.

“Our sincere apologies to those still affected, and to those inconvenienced over the weekend.”

It said cardless cash, Eftpos, ATM and telephone banking services were available — but irate customers were quick to refute this in their comments.

“Cardless Cash is not working as normal for some people,” wrote Daniel Beilin.

“We are continuing to work on access for those customers not yet able to log in, however encourage any customers who need urgent access to get in contact with us on 13 20 32 and we can help,” the statement said.

“We are very sorry for any inconvenience caused and thank our customers for their patience.”

The bank promised to reimburse any customers who incurred fees and charges as a result of the outage.

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