The bank that likes to say... crash: TSB's online banking goes titsup on launch day
Gremlins hit as bank splits from Lloyds
The newly single Trustee Savings Banks (TSB) has been hit with major website problems on the first day of its split from Lloyds.
The two banks are pulling apart ahead of the sale of TSB, which the European Commission set out as a precondition before the government bail-out of Lloyds during the banking crisis.
Some five million customers' accounts are being automatically transferred from Lloyds to TSB, while 631 branches of Lloyds Banking Group will become part of the standalone TSB bank.
But despite Lloyds Banking Group's chief executive Antonio Horta-Osorio's promise that customers would experience a "seamless" change, The Register has received a number of complaints about the move.
We put our readers' concerns to Lloyds Banking and it admitted that a fault in one of its data centres brought down both the Lloyds and the new TSB website down for about 85 minutes at 9.30 this morning.
Trustee Savings Bank was founded about 200 years ago and merged with Lloyds in 1995 to create Lloyds TSB, which is now 39 per cent owned by the taxpayer.
Lloyds Banking will continue to operate TSB, which will be the UK's eight largest bank, until its sale. Paul Pester, TSB's chief executive, said it would serve to "fuel the local economies" of 600 communities across the UK.
"We have today launched a bank which has been born fully formed," he said.
However, one Reg reader questioned why TSB had failed to secure the "fully formed" bank against intruders by taking the basic step of buying www.TSB.com. He wrote: "They should never have allowed the .com top level domain to be taken by someone else. It could easily be sold it to some scammers who quickly set up a look-alike site and skim thousands of login details. Many thousands of customers will be trying ‘www.tsb.com’ not knowing what the correct site should be. Whilst I agree that UK companies should use the ‘.co.uk’ domain, they should also own the ‘.com’ – especially someone we are supposed to trust."
Other readers have experienced different problems during the break-up. Julie Ferguson, a 32-year-old teacher from East London, told us her accounts had now been split between the two banks, with her current account held by Lloyds and her savings managed by TSB. She said: "It's a pain in the neck, even though I knew it was going to happen. Having your accounts split across two banks is really annoying. To be honest, I think I'll swap to another bank."
Twitter has been ablaze with criticism of TSB's new site, with disgruntled punters writing:
When was the ‘new’ @tsb website designed? 1998?— Paul Lloyd (@paulrobertlloyd) September 9, 2013
In a statement, a Lloyds Banking spokesman said: "We experienced a temporary issue with our Internet banking service earlier this morning, which affected the ability of some customers to log on successfully. The issue is now completely resolved and we apologise to customers for the inconvenience this will have caused. Our branches, telephone banking and cashpoints were not affected in any way."