Hot on the heels of O2's network outage, Barclays saw a problem with their services today, with countless customers prevented from having access to their mobile banking through the smartphone application. What's more, this is the third outage to hit the major banking provider in less than a month.
The latest outage to hit Barclays comes just days after customers of the HSBC, TSB and Barclays banking giants were locked out of their accounts only a week ago today. To make matters worse, last Friday was also payday for a large majority of people in the country, leaving thousands of people unable to pay bills, access their money, or make payments.
This morning's problems started with sluggish response times from the mobile application, with customers complaining about slow responses from the server when trying to log in. Issues started to flood in at around 8am, continuing through to around 11am.
As usual with high-profile outages, customers took to Twitter to report the problems to Barclays. As evidenced by some of the above tweets, Barclays didn't provide a great deal of information on the problem, referring to the service status hosted on their own website being "Amber".
Tips for minimising the impact of outages
As we saw last Friday when thousands of customers could not access their accounts on payday, outages can come at the worst possible time. If you're locked out of your accounts on payday and all your bills are scheduled for the same time of the month, then you could be faced with missed payments for credit cards and other bills. Though some providers are sympathetic and will remove missed payment markers from your credit file on one-off occasions, there's no requirement for them to do so.
So, to avoid being severely impacted by any future outages that could occur, keep in mind our top 3 tips:
- Set up Direct Debits to pay your essential bills, like credit cards. This should ensure that your bills go out on time, even if you're locked out. If they don't because the Direct Debit service is affected, then you've got a better chance of having missed payment markers removed.
- Consider keeping an emergency fund within a separate bank account owned by another financial institution. Many customers are now using start-up, online-only banks such as Monzo and Starling, which are getting incredible reviews for their innovative ways of banking.
- Credit cards are not always a burden. Keep a backup credit card for use in emergencies, but don't use it for all your usual spending. On the off-chance you're locked out of your account in an emergency, you can temporarily use many credit cards for free, providing you pay them off in full within the month.