PENTICTON - Two Similkameen residents are advising automated banking machine users to pay extra attention to their deposits following similar experiences using a new form of envelope free-deposit ABM.
Keremeos resident Arlene Arlow says she deposited $400 into the Keremeos Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce banking machine on Jan. 2, only to have the machine ask her if she wanted to complete the deposit for $320.
“I didn’t know what to do. It was 11:05 p.m., and I didn’t want to say yes to a deposit of $320 when I had deposited $400,” she says.
Arlow said no to the transaction, but then only had $320 returned to her. She reported the issue to the bank, which investigated and responded with the comment the deposits all balanced.
“I asked how the deposits were counted, and they told it me it was done by another machine,” Arlow says.
The bank's public relations director Caroline Van Hasselt wasn't exactly forthcoming with information about the issue.
"We have systems in place to track and verify transactions," she said. "If a client encounters a problem, we encourage them to contact CIBC Telephone Banking at 1-800-465-2422. We have contacted the client and resolved the matter to her satisfaction.”
She declined the opportunity to how many of the new machines are being used in Canada, how many other similar occurrences have been documented, whether it was possible for the bank machines to make mistakes and if so, how were the issues resolved.
Arlow said Jan. 18 that a Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce representative contacted her Jan. 17 to say $80 had been deposited into her account.
“It only took them 16 days to even offer a solution, but I’m grateful for that. I’m not sure how many of these machines are out there, but maybe they shouldn’t be in too much of a hurry to roll these out,” she says.
Arlow was also told the envelope-free machines were being rolled out in smaller communities first.
Princeton resident George Elliott called his experience with the new system “kind of bizarre.”
He tried to deposit three brand new 50 dollar bills, but the envelope free machine at the Imperial bank in Princeton would only accept one.
“I sent them through three times, finally said ‘screw this,’ flipped the 50s around so they were all oriented in similar fashion and tried again and still it wouldn’t accept them,” he said.
Elliott then fed the bills one at a time, and this time they were accepted.
“It says you can feed up to 50 items at a time, but now I’m thinking, maybe not,” he says, adding the incident was the first time he experienced a glitch.
“I use the system frequently. It’s been here in Princeton for, I’m going to say, the last couple of months,” he says.
“It happened to me at 9:30 at night. What are you going to do?” he says.
Arlow advises those using banking machines experiencing problems to get a slip out of the automated teller, which has the bank machine identification number on it.
“You need a slip, and I would recommend calling the financial institution head office over the branch itself,” says Arlow, who says a report will need to be submitted.
Both she and Elliott advise bank machine users to pay attention to their envelope-free deposit transactions.
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