Customers outraged after BB&T ‘malfunction’ locks them out of their accounts


BB&T Bank was the subject of customer anger for a second straight day Friday in the midst of an “equipment malfunction” which affected millions. Many reported being locked out of their accounts, not being able to use their ATMs or do online banking.

On Friday afternoon, the bank said it had finally isolated the problem and was in the process of fixing it.

BB&T customers locked out of their accounts due to outage

“The issue we’re working on was caused by an equipment malfunction in one of our data centers. At this time, we have no reason to believe this issue is related to cyber security,” the company posted on Facebook earlier in the day.

As of Friday afternoon, the bank said that systems were being restored and that its automated Phone24 service and ATMs were available.

“As our systems come back online, please be aware some of the information you will see in your accounts has not yet been fully updated from yesterday. We expect those balances and transactions to become current later today,” the bank said in a statement.

Earlier Friday, an outage map showed areas like Virginia, central Florida, northern Ohio, Maryland, north Georgia and Pennsyvlania being affected.

Responding to an individual customer’s inquiry about not being able to see if their direct deposit was posted, the bank said on Facebook: “Once the system comes up we will process transactions and everything should be up to date. This is has been and will be a challenging day to say the least!”

And that was just Friday; the Winston-Salem, North Carolina-based company said that the outage began Thursday afternoon. That’s when the bank said in a statement around 5:30 p.m.: “At this time, many of our services are unavailable, including digital banking, Phone24, and ATM. Thank you for your patience as we work diligently to restore your services.”

Obviously, the situation led to frustration from customers, especially because Friday was pay day for a lot of them.

BB&T vows to waive fees incurred due to outage

BB&T’s social accounts were answering customers’ questions and apologizing throughout the day. As the situation continued to unfold, the bank has promised the following two things:

  • To reimburse or waive any fees directly related to the outage.
  • To extend hours at most of its financial centers until 7 p.m. local time. “Our financial centers that are normally open on Saturdays will also stay open two additional hours to assist you,” the bank said in a statement.

The bank also stressed that cybersecurity was never an issue so customers don’t have to worry about their personal information being at risk.

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