For those who have the same warped sense of humour this Letter can also be had in French.
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Wednesday, April 6, 2011
Bank sanctioned Bank Robbery
Dear Advocated Pillay, the Banking Ombudsman, Did you know that the banks in South Africa have one enormous security hole? It's so huge that nobody wants to do anything about it.
The result is that unscrupulous and inefficient businesses and other rip off artists are taking advantage of the situation to take money illegitimately from people’s accounts with the help of the banks.
The banks are turning a blind eye to this BANK ROBBERY. And it’s made worse because the crime particularly affects the less sophisticated members of the population.
Anybody who has somebody’s current account number can raise an open ended debit order against it and the bank doesn’t need the client’s permission to implement it. And if they want to stop it there’s no point in asking their bank to do it because they’ll be told that the only person who can is the person who originated it.
Sharp operators phone people claiming to sell some service or other and in the process they get hold of bank account details. And the next thing the people know is that an amount is being deducted from their account each month.
At my bank they tell me they often get clients, who are usually the poorer ones, coming in to get debit orders stopped and the only way this can be done from the bank’s side is for the person concerned to close their account and open a new one.
With such a dubious system presumably it’s possible to have your entire account cleaned out in one go with a debit in favour of some crook with the right insider information.
And if that were to happen no doubt the bank would say, Don’t blame us. Thatwas donethrough a debit order and we have no control over those.
WHAT A FARCICAL SITUATION. HOW CAN BANKS BE ALLOWED TO DEDUCTED MONEY FROM A PERSON’S ACCOUNT WITHOUT HAVING THAT PERSON’S CONSENT IN WRITING?
DON’T YOU NOTICE THESE GRAVE SHORTOMINGS IN THE BANKING SYSTEM ADVOCATE PILLAY? WHY DON’T YOU DO SOMETHING ABOUT THIS? OR DO YOU ONLY START MOVING WHEN YOU HAVE AN OFFICIAL COMPLAINT?