RBS banking group ‘sorry’ for technical problems

17.5 million customers were affected by the technical problems. Picture: Jane Barlow

17.5 million customers were affected by the technical problems. Picture: Jane Barlow

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THE RBS banking group has apologised to its millions of customers after a technical problem left them unable to access accounts or withdraw money for the second time in nine months.

It came after a computer meltdown last June left millions of customers unable to withdraw cash for up to a week.

Customers began reporting problems with cash machines and cards being declined, as well as accessing their accounts online and via telephone, last night.

RBS and its subsidiaries NatWest and the Bank of Ulster initially issued apologies about the inconvenience on Twitter at 11.30pm.

The problem was later resolved at around 1am.

A spokeswoman for RBS said: “We are disappointed that our customers have faced disruption to banking services for a period this evening, and apologise for that. All services are now running as normal again.”

She added that any customers having continued difficulties should contact customer services.

RBS was unable to give details about why the service was affected and whether it stopped payments and direct debits being paid.

Customers complained on social media site Twitter about being unable to access their money.

Charlie O’Brien tweeted: “Yep my card just got declined. Not able to use cash points or online banking £natwest not good at all .....”

She later added: “I had to get my info from twitter! No details anywhere else about whole system being down. Poor show.”

Stephen Hester, the chief executive of RBS, which is 80% state-owned, was forced to apologise last June after millions of customers were left unable to view an up-to-date balance following a software update.

It also affected payments such as direct debits for bills and some wages were not received.