askST: If my bank fails, how do I claim my money if I have no copies of bank statements?

Reader Kelvin Goh wrote in to askST with a question about online bank accounts that do away with pass books and monthly hardcopy statements.

He said: "As I understand, all major banks in Singapore are covered by Singapore Deposit Insurance Corporation (SDIC), whereby up to S$50,000 is covered in case the bank fails.

"If my bank fails and its IT infrastructure (such as the servers) are also out of service, how can I go about claiming my money if I have no hardcopies of my balance in the bank?"

Invest editor Lorna Tan answers the question.

Banks in Singapore adhere to strict technology guidelines set out by the Monetary Authority of Singapore.

Banks are expected to have proper back-up procedures to ensure that records can be recovered in the event of disruption to IT services. Customers need not worry about loss of data as there will be a record.

If your bank fails and it is a member of the Deposit Insurance (DI) Scheme, which is administered by the Singapore Deposit Insurance Corporation (SDIC), there is no need for you to file a claim with SDIC. The failed bank would have provided SDIC with the required data to process compensation. You just need to keep a lookout for announcements through mass media on how compensation would be made to you.

Under the DI Scheme, a depositor of a member bank or finance company is automatically insured up to an aggregate limit of S$50,000 per depositor per Scheme member.

Invest editor Lorna Tan will be giving a askST@NLB talk on March 31, 7pm. The talk is fully subscribed, but you can catch it via livestream at http://str.sg/48xZ.