Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2011/07/27/post_office_counter_fail/

Post Office banking collapses in computer fail

Only cardboard cards for now, thanks

By John Oates

Posted in Financial News, 27th July 2011 12:21 GMT

Anyone hoping to access their Post Office bank accounts today is out of luck – a computer failure has blocked access at all 11,820 branches.

Pin devices on counters are out of action, along with any other transactions using card accounts.

A spokesman for the Post Office said:

The Post Office today apologised to its customers for a computer problem which affected some transactions in its branches. Martin Moran, Post Office commercial director said: " We are making every effort to restore these services as soon as possible."

The 11,820 branches remain open. However, transactions involving Post Office Card Accounts, and debit and credit cards using the pin pads at branch counters, are affected by the outage.

However, special arrangements were made to ensure that emergency cash payments were made to pensioners and benefit claimants using the Post Office Card Account.

Customers can continue to withdraw cash from any of the Post Office's 2,000 ATMs, which are unaffected by this problem.

The problem is most serious for pensioners and benefit claimants, who get money paid directly into PO accounts. ®