Bank customers ‘facing account lock-out’ if business details aren’t updated

Gary McDonald Enterprise Editor

SOME Ulster Lender business clients in Northern Eire deal with being locked out of their accounts from the conclude of this week unless they finish what one particular organization owner described as an “unwieldy and unnecessary” online approach updating their details.

The bank wrote to customers in April asking them for up-to-date information and facts about their company accounts.

It states it requirements to make sure it holds precise facts about their enterprise, like specifics on folks who have significant command above it.

The financial institution insists it is complying with regulatory obligations, and the procedure forms a critical component of it capacity to detect and fight fraudulent transactions, revenue laundering and tax evasion.

And it warned that if it would not obtain this information and facts on the internet by Could 13 “we will want to limit accessibility to your accounts which usually means (but is not limited to) you would not be in a position to deposit, withdraw or transfer resources and we would not be able to process any standing orders”.

But 1 businessman who contacted the Irish News insisting the course of action is “needless and unwanted” as Ulster Financial institution, with whom he has experienced a several years-extensive affiliation, held all his information currently.

And he claimed: “The on-line method is cumbersome and desperately time-consuming, and after you get you far, you need to post private particulars to a third celebration, which I am not organized to do.”

The director, whose extensive-proven North Down enterprise employs a lot more than a dozen staff members, reported that, obtaining deserted the on the net approach halfway as a result of, he was then phoned by Ulster Financial institution.

“The lady said it was her occupation to phone around clients and try to assistance them.

“She explained to me I was the only 1 who’d truly even acquired that much, which to me implies that no person is even hoping to go through that laborious and unwieldy method on the portal.”

He extra: “Ulster Lender currently has all the information of my business, me personally, and my fellow director.

“But in this article I am, becoming requested to provide photographic ID and mail in utility expenditures to confirm my tackle. It can be useless in my check out.

“And it is not going to cost me a second believed to get my company in other places, which is a view I’m certain other folks in a related position will share.”

A spokesperson for Ulster Lender advised the Irish News: “In buy to comply with our regulatory specifications, we are writing to most of our enterprise prospects to be certain that we keep up to date data for them and their business enterprise.

“We are accomplishing this to enable reduce fraud and fiscal crime. In the instance wherever a shopper does not react to various makes an attempt to validate this data, we may prohibit obtain to sure account services.

“We persuade customers to answer to any correspondence as before long as attainable so we can keep on to meet their banking wants.”

The improved security checks appear as part of the Powerful Consumer Authentication (SCA) system led by trade association United kingdom Finance.

Jana Waterproof coat, managing director of payments and innovation at Uk Finance stated: “Fraud is a rising dilemma, with criminals thieving additional than £750 million in the initial half of 2021 by yourself. That is why it is additional critical than at any time that added protections like Robust Consumer Authentication are set in location.

“For retailers, applying SCA will provide buyers peace of head that payment processes are additional secure.

“The sector and stakeholders have worked tirelessly to get completely ready for this adjust and we stimulate any suppliers who have not nevertheless applied SCA to act as quickly as probable to make certain the new protections are available to all.”

The initial deadline for SCA was March 2021 but the FCA agreed to a delay March 2022 thanks to Covid-19, and it has mentioned that there will be no even more extensions to this deadline.