'The bank ID farce: online accounts don't accept online statements' blog discussion

This is the discussion to link on the back of Martin's blog. Please read the blog first, as this discussion follows it.

Please click reply to discuss below.


  • pete_v
    pete_v Posts: 56 Forumite
    Unlikely to be due to regulations directly. You'll probably find they say something vague like "banks must satisfy themselves as to customers' identity", and the banks' own compliance departments then turn that into all kinds of stringent policies while saying "not our fault guv, new legislation, blame the government".

  • I am always getting locked out, but have never been asked to send certified ID. How ridiculous! And to be honest I would probably close my account if they did. Usually a phone call is sufficient
  • Reminds me of when I went to the bank to change my name on my account after I got married.

    Took in a few ID documents - passport, marriage certificate, driving license, utility bill...

    I sat down with the lady and filled in the forms as she took copies of my ID.

    I received a letter from my bank the next week saying the name change could not be processed as the signature I used didn't match their records, they were concerned that it was a case of identity fraud, and that I had to go personally to the branch with several forms of ID! :mad:

    The joint account I hold with my husband at a different bank required a copy of my marriage certificate and drivers license/passport. They changed it in front of me within 10 minutes. Excellent service.
  • Yes, the situation really is farcical.

    At the beginning of this year I opened a bank account for my newly born grandson. This is the ID I needed: His birth certificate, both his parents' birth certificates, my own birth certificate, my passport, a household bill, and a letter to his mother confirming her receipt of child benefit. A little excessive.

    I go into the bank almost every week and make a small deposit of change that I've collected over the week. I hadn't had a statement for the account since I'd opened it, so the week before last I asked if they'd print me one off. No, they couldn't, unless I had my passport or driving licence on me (which I didn't). I was furious :mad:.

    It's a tiny branch, and they do know me. I only ever deposit - there aren't any withdrawals allowed until my grandson's 16. (14 years away yet). But they wouldn't budge.

    I realise there are rules relating to money-laundering, but I believe this is more to do with people too frightened to use discretion and/or management not allowing staff to do so. Whenever will common sense return?
  • I'm going to guess that Martin is listed with CIFAS or something like that though, thus flagging up to his banks' fraud department that extra checks need to be made?

    I mean, seriously, if someone phoned you up claiming to be Martin Lewis, you'd double-double-check, right?
  • I opt for paperless banking on all my accounts (and feel I save the banks some money and do my bit for the environment blah blah) but when I do need a statement (as you quite often do when claiming for benefits/grants etc) and go into a bank or BS and ask them for a printed and certified statement ( whether that be on headed paper, or just stamped and signed) some do it with a smile, some point blank refuse without a £5 payment!

    Why the descrepency! Why can't I just have a printed statement showing MY money! NO incentive to go paperless at all

  • WestonDave
    WestonDave Posts: 5,154
    Rampant Recycler
    Not quite sure what you are expecting - banks to accept proof of Id via documents that you could easily have manipulated on home PC software? That is the reason you need to supply an original or a certified copy - to ensure that what you are providing is either genuine or a reliable copy of a genuine document. Its bad enough trying to spot the forgeries when you have the "real" passport or driving licence in front of you - never mind some scrappy bit of photocopying.

    The alternative is for the banks to use online checking via agencies like 192 or creditsafe - however they charge for their services and I suspect Martin wouldn't be too quick to encourage banks to charge say £5 to get into your account to save this procedure. I guess in the longer term this may be the approach especially if volume can get the costs down to a reasonable level that maybe banks will consider swallowing (porcine aviation alert!)

    Alternatively - recognise that with internet only banking comes a few downsides to offset the advantages. Not having a branch network to resource may save the bank money so they can pass on better rates, but it also means in situations like this you can't just pop in and show your passport over the counter - hence the need to get it certified.

    Finally - it may be a pain for customers but believe me the compliance is a much bigger pain from the other side, and if you get it wrong its not just a fine at stake - getting this one wrong carries a jail sentence (although I'm not sure anyone has yet actually been sent down!). That is why big organisations end up putting in place watertight procedures with lists of what is and isn't allowed - letting random staff use their initiative is asking for problems.
    Adventure before Dementia!
  • bylromarha
    bylromarha Posts: 10,085
    I've been Money Tipped!
    Okay - stupid stories.

    I had to produce photo ID (passport or driving licence) to collect an order from Sainsburys direct. Nothing else was valid. It had to have my photo on.

    My playmobil advent calender was obviously a terrorist risk.
    Who made hogs and dogs and frogs?
  • Been through this on Friday!
    Had an appointment at the bank to move my matured Isa for their better rate and still had to take my identity. I always ask for the same person as she has served me for 20 years and I like her as she is blessed with common sense. She told me that they no longer have the option to press the "customer known to operative" button which used to exist. (In case they are in league with you.)
    Seemingly these money-laundering people open lots of accounts with small amounts of money in each; the fact that you only have a small amount of money in total is irrelevant!
  • DarkConvict
    DarkConvict Posts: 6,338
    Combo Breaker First Post
    Since A&L turned to Santander we fail the ID checks over the phone, and just recently both mine and my mom's accounts stopped working online. Mine came back up almost instantly but my mom had to get a new pin code after spending ages on the phone, the pin code arrived after 2 weeks but didn't work, now we have to wait a further 2 weeks.

    The ID required is over the top, which is why I am in favour of an identity service, with or without an ID card. But the scope was sadly to big for an M.Res. project so I moved focus to augmented reality instead.
    Although no trees were harmed during the creation of this post, a large number of electrons were greatly inconvenienced.

    There are two ways of constructing a software design: One way is to make it so simple that there are obviously no deficiencies, and the other way is to make it so complicated that there are no obvious deficiencies
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