Like many people these days I use online banking to keep track of finances and for my UK business I use Barclays Bank who have always been ahead of the curve in terms of their online services (we were paying our staff charge-free via bank transfer back in 1998 via their online banking portal).
Unfortunately as great as their ‘highs’ have been, Barclays have also hit some incredible lows due to mistakes on their part and their most recent is related to one of their historic worst. For the past week I’ve been unable to login to my online banking because the ‘Mobile PinSentry’ – the phone version of the physical security device that accompanies their online banking services – has a problem. Barclays clearly know about it as evidenced by the message when you trying and login:
Mobile PINsentry on Android
We are aware that there is an issue affecting customers attempting to log in using Mobile PINsentry via our Android app and we are working to fix this as soon as possible.
Customers using the PINsentry card reader or Mobile PINsentry via the Apple/iOS app are unaffected.
The reason I find this failure astonishing is because not only has this message been up for quite some time and a fix has yet to be issued, potentially leaving many customers unable to access their money and potentially make critical transfers/payments, thus incurring charges or losing deals but also that it is not the first time customers have been in this situation.
When Barclays launched the PinSentry back in 2007 with little warning to customers, many were caught out and either never received their readers or were abroad and unable to get them – these customers were effectively being locked out of critical functionality without warning by an executive decision.
With this in mind, I really expected a resolution to the Barclays Android Mobile PinSentry issue within hours but now it has been days – luckily for me I haven’t had to login to my account and can still do everything needed via my mobile app but others may not be so fortunate.