A credit union in Vancouver underwent a complete service shutdown for three days, and complete chaos ensued. Vancity, also known as Vancouver City Savings Credit Union, experienced an online services outage that shut down its online systems for several days last week. They are the largest community credit union in Canada and offer banking services to many people throughout the Greater Vancouver Area.
Unsurprisingly, people freaked out, because this meant a lot of things for a lot of people. The credit union has over 525,000 members in B.C. and this power outage resulted in none of them being able to log onto their online accounts, do online transactions, make e-transfers, pay online bills, or see their account balances, according to CBC News. Simply put, it caused a huge mess.
One of the biggest issues the outage caused was inteferring with people paying their bills on time. The credit union said in a tweet that they had contacted companies about the service disruption. Many had tweeted at the credit union that they were unable to pay their bills on time or take out money.
[12:30pm PT] This outage impacts our members’ ability to pay bills. We have reached out to many large bill payment entities such as TELUS and BC Hydro, in an effort to make them aware of our current challenges and the impact on our members. https://t.co/BoA0e4QUfH— Vancity (@Vancity) October 6, 2018
Reddit user butternut1234 commented, "One of the most embarrassing things I have seen in a long time. No transparency, and the same talking points have been used for 3 days straight now. Switching banks the first second I have access to my money and account". His comment got 41 points.
On the other hand, some stood up for the credit union. Reddit user yzfr1604
commented on this Reddit thread, "Give them another chance, lighting usually doesn’t strike twice. Maybe have a backup account somewhere else and keep some cash on hand." His comment got 31 points.
So what caused the three-day service outage? The credit union has stated that it was not due to a virus or security hack. However, the specific reason appears to be still unclear and vague. "We are committed to get to the bottom of this issue," said CEO Tamara Vrooman in a video statement about the incident. "While we will need to conduct a thorough investigation to be certain, we believe it has something to do with the interface between our multiple systems."
[9:00am PT] We’re happy to share that our system is fully restored and you can conduct your banking transactions. We are aware that some transactions are still being posted and may not appear in your account right away. We’re sorry for the inconvenience this has caused.— Vancity (@Vancity) October 7, 2018
Their banking system is currently back up and running, but the situation has left many wondering if they should switch banks. Several debates about it took place on Reddit, where many people stated that they would be leaving Vancity after the outage. Some did defend the credit union, but not everyone was so quick to forgive.
People have also took to Twitter to discuss their frustrations, with many expressing that they would be leaving the credit union. Some shared their horror stories due to the outage. Check out some of the tweets below.
I wonder how many #vancity members jumped ship today after not having access to online banking for close to 24 hours .... eep!— Dianna (@Dianna_chs) October 5, 2018
.@Vancity 525,000 people with no access to their money for 2 days, and no ETA for a fix. I switched to Vancity because I was tired of big banks ripping me off on service charges. But I guess you get what you pay for? Will be closing my accounts at my earliest ability to do so.— Mitch Brown (@brownmbg) October 5, 2018
@Vancity Your system has been glitchy and frustrating since you did the whole overhaul. I have no faith that the “improvements” you are planning to make to Visa system are going to go smoothly. So frustrated b/c I prefer to be w/a credit union, but I have lost trust in VanCity.— Riel Hahn (@RielHahn) October 5, 2018
I fly out Tuesday and can't put money on my Visa or get funds transfered to me. I get outages but this is looking to drag over the fucking long weekend. That is almost an entire week. Wtf is going on? - Member since 1998— NB, eh? 🏀🇨🇦 (@michaelmanners9) October 6, 2018
CEO Vrooman told CBC News that "Vancity will cover late fees and interest incurred due to the outage to 'keep our members whole' and that "Vancity was reaching out to credit agencies to make sure members' credit scores were not adversely affected."
However, these efforts may be too little, too late as many have expressed on the Internet that they will be taking their money elsewhere.