Monday, April 23, 2007

Shiti-Bank...

If you thought violation of confidentiality by Airtel was too much, here is something which takes the cake.

This weekend I received my account statements from Citibank N.A through a courier at my residence address. It contained the usual stuff – few pages of quarterly bank statement, statement of my credit card dues and also a page for the reward points. However, right at the end, stapled along with the 5 sheets was 6th one – carrying the Statement of Annual interest credited.

First I was amused and confused – I never received any interest from the bank through whole of the year (April 2006-March2007). Then how come this statement claims that 5 figure amount had been credited as interest into my account on so and so dates. I was shocked, confused and at same time thrilled – was I about to get some money which I didn’t know I was supposed to get. But on the other side I was sure I wasn’t due to get any interest – since I don’t park much funds in this account at all.

Few scalp scratches later – I found that the bank had been kind enough to share this confidential banking information of another customer (who incidentally is also a colleague at work). I tried calling the Call centre today to lodge a complaint – but then after few minutes of wait – dropped the call. Those call centre people will not do any thing more than their parroted answers “We apologize for the inconvenience caused. We assure this will not happen again” – all of which are ridiculously useless responses. And they will make sure that any demands to talk to a senior person will be rewarded with a “Please be hold while I transfer you to my supervisor” and then an endless wait. Only God knows where those ever elusive senior personnel always are.

I resorted to a lesser headache method – filed an online complaint (Reference no. 4207047763). I know, I know… there answers won’t be any different. After all they are from the manual Customer Harassment manual that the phone guys have been tutored from – but at least I save myself the hassle of being on endless ‘hold the call’ – which is a literal pain in the neck. Moreover, none of these banks offer you a Toll Free helpline – so you are expected to pay for telling them their mistakes as well.

Anyways the inconvenience caused is not mine alone. While I am still fretting and worried about which all places my confidential bank statements might have gone to – the colleague whose statement was made public to me won’t even be apologized to. (Of course, I handed over his document to him in due confidentiality).

So next time some agency asks your for a bank statement or a proof of income – you can as well approach Citibank. They will be able to oblige by giving you bank statements and other confidential information of whatever kind you need.

2 comments:

How do we know said...

why don't u just blacklist these banks? That way, they lose your business.

My blacklist is ICICI, ABN Amro, Citibank, HSBC and HDFC. All for fraudulent transactions/fee or mistakes like the one u have just mentioned, or simply, non responsiveness.

ABN Amro recently realised how much money they were losing bcs i had chosen another bank for my corporate account. It was sweet revenge to tell the bank manager " Maybe, you should treat your retail customers better. That way, when they are big enough to matter, you will not lose their business."

!!! said...

Thats the Unfortunate part... I can't choose to blacklist because its my salary account and the corporate banker for my company :-(

...unless I change my job.

BTW.. its been over 10 days since I filed the compliant -- they still have not replied to the complaint.

-Kustavan

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