Banking in 2019: Sure, we'd recommend TSB's online, mobe banking say cowed customers

TITSUP* bank gets thumbs up from personal banking users

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In a baffling turn of events, more than half of IT chaos bank TSB's customers said they would recommend its online and mobile banking services – y'know, the ones that were crippled for huge chunks of last year – to friends and family.

TSB has become the poster child for all that is wrong with IT services in the financial sector, earning the unflattering moniker of meltdown bank after a botched migration took services down for a week in April 2018.

That was followed by months of continued frustration for many customers as they were beset by smaller-scale outages, heightened risk of fraud and long waits on the phone lines and in branches.

El Reg's mailbox has bulged with complaints about the bank, and TSB itself reported that 80,000 customers ditched it during 2018.

Despite this, of the 1,000 TSB personal banking customers surveyed in Great Britain, some 59 per cent said they were "extremely likely" or "very likely" to recommend its online and mobile banking to family and friends. No data is given on whether they'd be even more likely to recommend it to their enemies.

Business customers – who were particularly hard hit by the TSB chaos – were less enthusiastic about their provider. Some 38 per cent of the 1,400 quizzed said they would recommend online and mobe services to other SMEs – presumably those they're in competition with.

The figures were released today as part of a UK-wide assessment of banking services introduced by the Competition and Marketing Authority.

It should be noted that the personal banking survey ran between February and December 2018, while the business accounts poll ran from January to December – so it's possible some respondents were questioned before the bank's spectacular series of TITSUPs.

And TSB was the bottom of the pack for both personal and business customers in online and mobile banking services, with each dropping six spots from the previous survey, which was released in August.

Nonetheless, the stats are a pretty damning indictment of the state of British online banking – which is something the House of Commons Treasury Committee is hoping to expose in its probe into the "astonishing" number of IT failures suffered by UK banks.

"Measly apologies and hollow words from financial services institutions will not suffice when consumers aren't able to access their own money and face delays in paying bills," said chair Nicky Morgan when the inquiry was launched.

The inquiry stopped taking written submissions last month, so oral evidence sessions – which El Reg expects to be quite fiery – should be kicking off soon. ®

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