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Failed ATM withdrawals a concern, says banking ombudsman

Customers who fail to get cash from the ATM even while the transaction recorded as successful often end up running around the banks to know if their money was safe somewhere.

The Banking Ombudsman recently found that the cash that does not come out of the machine after a particular transaction automatically goes to a ‘cash divert tray’ fitted in the machine. But there was no guarantee that the cash accumulated in the tray is either returned to the respective account holders or to the bank.

According to N Krishna Mohan, Banking Ombudsman for Andhra Pradesh and Telangana states, the cash that remained undelivered in this manner was often pocketed by those who periodically open the ATM to replenish it with cash.

“As the bank does not keep tab of such failed remittances on a real time basis they obviously fail to notice that the cash accumulated in the ‘divert tray’ was pocked by those who are entrusted with the job of replenishing the ATM with cash. Customers face the prospect of loosing the money as the banks question the customer’s claim in the absence of any proof,” Krishna Mohan said.

The Banking Ombudsman said close to 29% of all the complaints received from the bank customers were related to ATM, debit card and credit card payments. These include failed ATM withdrawals, fraudulent internet transactions through cloning of cards, harassment in collection of credit card dues and non-updating of CIBIL status, according to him.

The number of complaints also increased marginally in the year 2013-14 as compared to the numbers in the previous year, according to the Ombudsman data. About 34% of all the 4,803 complaints examined by the Ombudsman, Hyderabad were settled amicably, he said.

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