DBS to refund credit and debit card users affected by duplicate transactions by June 20

DBS is aware of duplicate transactions on selected cards and is investigating to make refunds. PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM APP

SINGAPORE - DBS Bank customers have flagged a glitch in the lender's banking services, with several of them saying that they were charged twice for transactions made on credit and debit cards.

DBS, Singapore's largest bank, said in a Facebook post on Friday (June 18) that it is fixing the technical issue that caused the duplicate transactions on certain debit and credit cards.

Affected customers will be refunded automatically by Sunday, it added.

In response to media queries, a DBS spokesman said the bank has discovered a payment processing glitch, which resulted in the duplicate transactions on some debit and credit cards.

"The issue has been resolved and we would like to assure all customers that our systems remain safe, secure, and uncompromised. The automatic refund process is now underway and will be completed by this weekend. We apologise for any undue anxiety and inconvenience caused," said the spokesman.

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) said it has instructed DBS to conduct a thorough investigation of the incident and submit the report to the central bank.

"Supervisory actions will be taken if the bank has fallen short of MAS' expectations," an MAS spokesman told The Straits Times.

"MAS takes a serious view of this incident. We expect all financial institutions to put in place processes to ensure the reliability of their IT systems and the effective delivery of financial services to their customers," said the spokesman.

Many users said they were unable to log in to their accounts through the app or Internet banking portal.

The bank's Internet banking portal warned users of heavy traffic to the site. "We are experiencing heavy traffic to our services. You will be redirected shortly. Alternatively, please log in later."

One of the customers who were double-charged for the same transaction is housewife Asyura Irfan.

The 37-year-old told The Straits Times that she was charged $11.70 twice for a transaction made on Grab on Tuesday, while her husband similarly had $29 deducted twice from his account for a Giant supermarket purchase on Monday. They are both using POSB debit cards.

Her mother was also charged $54 twice for a purchase on booking platform Klook using a POSB debit card, she added. The amount for the purchase on Tuesday was deducted on Thursday, but another deduction was made on Friday for the same purchase.

"As of now, I am unable to login to the POSB app," said Madam Asyura on Friday morning.

Ms Sylvia Lee, 31, said she was charged $38.50 twice for activewear she purchased with her DBS debit card from Tangs department store on Thursday. The amount had already been debited from her account on the same day but she realised that it had been deducted again on Friday morning.

She tried in vain to call two of the bank's hotlines, and also could not log in to the bank's mobile banking app from about 10.30am.

"Thankfully, it was not a large amount, but it's still money," said Ms Lee, who works in attractions and the food and beverage industry.

Several customers said on DBS' Facebook page that they were also unable to get through to the bank's customer service hotline.

Many users said they were unable to log in to their accounts through the app or Internet banking portal. PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM DBS

Facebook user Leo Nardo Tan urged the bank to investigate the glitch urgently: "I have at least two duplicate transactions that I was aware (of). Need to check through more past transactions."

Mr Brandon Lee, one of those who managed to contact the bank, wrote: "The customer officer told me to request for a callback once they find out the cause in three working days."

A message also circulated online claiming that POSB digibank online's security has been breached and urging customers not to log into the Internet banking platform.

DBS said that the message is false and its system remains safe.

The Straits Times has contacted the bank for more information on the glitch.

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