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Lloyds Bank Group IT system crashes in UK

Lloyds Bank and its Halifax, Bank of Scotland and ‘arms-length’ TSB unit, which was spun off last year but still relies on its former parent group’s IT system, suffered a major outage of its retail banking systems in the UK yesterday with customers unable to withdraw money from cashpoints or pay for in-store goods with their debit cards.

The problems hit UK retail bank customers yesterday on Sunday 26 January and lasted from 3-9pm. Online transactions were unaffected but in-store card purchases and IT withdrawals crashed. Lloyds Bank has apologised and says it has now fixed the failed server that caused the outage. 

A spokeswoman said: "We apologise that earlier today, some customers were unable to complete their debit card transactions. Although the majority of transactions were unaffected, we are very sorry for the inconvenience that this will have caused."

Around 7,000 ATMs were hit by the server failure, with customers unable to withdraw cash for around half an hour earlier in the day. The chief executive officer (CEO) of TSB, Paul Pester, later took to Twitter, reported the 'BBC' to explain to a customer that the failure was specifically caused by the failure of HP server in the UK.   

The IT failure is latest to hit a major UK retail bank after similar failures at RBS, Barclays and indeed Lloyds last year (as TSB was spun off). The legacy issue and lack of flexibility in older core banking systems is perhaps starting to show as wheezing old servers and various bolt-ons start to fail, requiring rapid investment to increase retail banking resiliency. 

By Asim Shah and Neil Ainger