Banks hit with unknown computer gliches

The Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce and TD Bank Financial Group were both hit with unidentified computer glitches last month, causing disruption to customer accounts and online banking systems.

An estimated 60,000 personal lines of credit accounts at the CIBC were affected by a system error on July 28 that caused a “double-dipping” effect.

Withdrawals, deposits, money transfers and debit payments were being doubled in some of the line of credit accounts. For example, if a customer withdrew $20 from his or her account, it would appear twice on the transaction record, totalling $40.

However, less than one per cent were affected by this error, CIBC said. By the next day, all computer systems responsible for processing customer transactions were operating normally, while the bank worked to reverse erroneous transactions.

Explanations or details of the system errors were not available.

In related news, in the evening hours of July 28, TD Bank Financial Group also experienced technical difficulties, what it called “a temporary system malfunction.”

“We are up and running and everything is fine,” said Christa Poole, a spokesperson for TD Bank Financial Group, speaking on July 29.

The specifics of the “technical problem” are still not known by the bank, but Poole said it is investigating what caused its online system, called EasyWeb, to be unavailable for several hours.

“Customers who logged onto the site got a message saying the service wasn’t available,” Poole said. “Customers accounts were not affected.”

Downtime on account access was also happening at Automated Banking Machines (ABMs), Poole said. Customers who inserted their bank cards into ATMs got an error message explaining that the machines were temporarily out of service.

Everything was back to normal by the next day, she added.

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