Debit Card Decision Reference 2023-0019

Case OutcomeSubstantially upheld
Subject MatterDebit Card
Date30 January 2023
Finantial SectorBanking
Conducts Complained OfDisputed transactions,Dissatisfaction with customer service , Failure to process instructions in a timely manner
Decision Ref:
Product / Service:
Debit Card
Conduct(s) complained of:
Disputed transactions
Dissatisfaction with customer service
Failure to process instructions in a timely manner
Substantially upheld
This complaint arises from unauthorised transactions on the Complainant’s current
account in late 2015/early 2016 and the Provider’s refusal to reimburse the Complainant
with the amount of these unauthorised transactions.
The Complainant’s Case
The Complainant states that he was on holiday abroad at a named resort from 22
December 2015 to 5 January 2016. While there, on 24 December 2015 he visited a shop
near the resort and purchased an item of electrical goods (a tablet). The Complainant
states that:
“The shop advisor told me it was 145 euros. I was happy to purchase it at the time
and I put my card into their machine, entered my pin which I had covered as I’ve
been a victim of identity fraud before, and the shop advisor said it didn’t work.”
The Complainant says that the merchant told him that, “the machine was broken and the
transaction hadn’t gone through”, and asked him to use another machine.
The Complainant says that he entered his card and PIN, again with care, into the other
machine and the shop advisor gave him a receipt for €145.00. The Complainant has
furnished a copy of the receipt on which it is noted that the item of electrical goods was to
be collected on 30 December 2015. The Complainant says that he collected the item of
electrical goods from the merchant on 30 December 2015.
- 2 -
The Complainant says that, shortly after returning home from his holiday on 5 January
2016 and, sometime between then and his first contact with the Provider on 11 January
2016, he received his latest bank statement, and he noticed two things that he says caused
him concern. First, the amount charged by the shop where he had purchased the item of
electrical goods appeared as €125, and not €145, which the Complainant says was the
price agreed and noted on the receipt issued.
Secondly, the amount was billed on 30 December 2015 and not 24 December 2015, the
date the transaction took place. The Complainant says that “This caused me concern
because I did not give my card and pin on this day”. The Complainant submits that he then
noticed other transactions with other merchants on his account statement which he says
he never made: one transaction for €100 on 30 December 2015, one for €2,989 on 4
January 2016 and one for €3,995 on 5 January 2016.
The Complainant says that he made efforts to contact the retail outlets named in his bank
statement, and that he spoke with the owner of one of the merchants and requested a
receipt for the purchase. The Complainant says that he explained the situation and, “gave
him my wife’s email address to send the receipt to”, however the merchant advised that he
was not willing to send it and was not at all helpful. The Complainant submits that he could
not find any details for another of the merchants apart from a Facebook page (which he
sent messages to and never received a reply) and internet webpages about people having
fraud experiences.
The Complainant states that, during his exchanges with the Provider on 11 January 2015
and subsequently, he brought this to the attention of the Provider and says that “never in
my life have I ever encountered such unhelpful, narky individuals”.
He describes the response of the Provider’s employee as, “belittling my questions, not
answering them directly: complete avoidance & unwillingness to listen my complaint,
making me feel like I'm a criminal.”
The Complainant says that when he first contacted the Provider, he was told to go to his
branch of the Provider to meet with a manager. The Complainant submits that he left work
early, and drove approximately 90 miles round trip, only to be told, when he got there,
that there was no manager available, and that no appointment had been booked.
The Complaint says that, in later correspondence with the Provider, it sought to explain
what had happened regarding his attendance at the branch of the Provider where the
account at issue is held, as follows:

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