Feeds

Intelligent Finance upgrade downs web service

IF only... we hadn't been 'taken by surprise'

Remote control for virtualized desktops

Intelligent Finance (IF) hit a system upgrade catastrophe on Sunday which left the internet banking service severely disrupted for nearly two days, much to the chagrin of its users.

Thousands of people who attempted to access their account via IF's website were greeted with a static message that declared "we are currently updating our online and telephone systems".

An IF spokeswoman told El Reg that the the bank was closed for routine upgrades as well as to increase system capacity.

IF, which was founded in 2000 and is a division of Halifax plc, claims to offer one of the largest mortgage offsetting banking services in the UK. It chose Sunday to carry out the work in the hope of preventing major disruption to its users.

But things at IF HQ didn't go entirely according to plan. The spokeswoman explained:

"On Monday morning, it became clear as business volumes ramped up, that whilst 99 per cent of the systems upgrades were successful, the hardware to increase our potential capacity was causing problems by slowing systems and causing customer outage. This is not acceptable customer service and we fully recognise this."

Indeed, many users struggled to get past the initial IF logon page for much of Sunday and all of Monday and there was added frustration for anyone calling the banking service.

One Reg reader, who emailed us during the system outage, said: "If I call up and ask to access my current account, it asks me for my details and then I get a recorded message telling me their 'systems are updating'."

The spokeswoman confirmed phone lines had been stretched while the bank attempted to resolve the problem.

Asked why the firm appeared to lack a latency back-up system, the spokeswoman said: "We had huge confidence that the upgrade would go smoothly, so this really took us by surprise."

She said that, although the phone lines were stretched due to demand for the service, users could still do their banking via that method. The firm then made the decision to down the website arm of their business while a hardware reinstall was carried out to fix the problem.

IF is continuing to closely monitor the system, which returned to normal service early this morning.

But, for one frustrated user, the downtime was simply unacceptable. He told us: "I don't think this is any way to run a bank, being unavailable for two days. Totally hopeless." ®

Intelligent flash storage arrays

More from The Register

next story
NSA SOURCE CODE LEAK: Information slurp tools to appear online
Now you can run your own intelligence agency
Azure TITSUP caused by INFINITE LOOP
Fat fingered geo-block kept Aussies in the dark
Yahoo! blames! MONSTER! email! OUTAGE! on! CUT! CABLE! bungle!
Weekend woe for BT as telco struggles to restore service
Cloud unicorns are extinct so DiData cloud mess was YOUR fault
Applications need to be built to handle TITSUP incidents
Stop the IoT revolution! We need to figure out packet sizes first
Researchers test 802.15.4 and find we know nuh-think! about large scale sensor network ops
Turnbull should spare us all airline-magazine-grade cloud hype
Box-hugger is not a dirty word, Minister. Box-huggers make the cloud WORK
SanDisk vows: We'll have a 16TB SSD WHOPPER by 2016
Flash WORM has a serious use for archived photos and videos
Astro-boffins start opening universe simulation data
Got a supercomputer? Want to simulate a universe? Here you go
Do you spend ages wasting time because of a bulging rack?
No more cloud-latency tea breaks for you, users! Get a load of THIS
prev story

Whitepapers

10 ways wire data helps conquer IT complexity
IT teams can automatically detect problems across the IT environment, spot data theft, select unique pieces of transaction payloads to send to a data source, and more.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
The total economic impact of Druva inSync
Examining the ROI enterprises may realize by implementing inSync, as they look to improve backup and recovery of endpoint data in a cost-effective manner.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.