29/02/2008

Nationwide ATM Customers Face Day Of Reckoning

It was a very merry Christmas indeed for thousands of Nationwide customers who haven't been charged for cash machine withdrawals - but the day of reckoning is looming.

Nationwide has apologised to its customers in Northern Ireland after money they withdrew from Northern Bank cash machines was not debited from their accounts.

The error affects more than 7,500 people and involves a total of £400,000 which was taken out of these particular ATMs between November and February.

However, the building society's customers will now have the money debited from their account in less than two weeks time - on 10 March.

Nationwide said overdrawn customers will not be charged if this is due to the error - which only came to light after a customer complained.

Jay Colville, Area Director of Nationwide in Northern Ireland, said the error was "not connected" to the upgrade of Northern Bank cash machines before Christmas.

"I would just like to apologise to all the customers affected. We do recognise it is our mistake," he said.

He said that the problem derived from an IT fault in their connection to the Link network.

"In December, the Link organisation upgraded the ATM system. Unfortunately our system didn't pick that up correctly and we apologise for that," he said.

"We are going to be sympathetic to hardship cases. We won't charge people for this event."

An internal investigation is now under way into what happened.

(BMcC)


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