Visa questioned by MPs over ‘deeply worrying’ outage

5 June 2018
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Card giant Visa has been questioned by the Treasury Committee following a hardware failure on 1 June, which left consumers across Europe unable to make debit and credit card payments.

Visa issued a statement on Saturday evening to say that the technical issue had been resolved and that its network is “working normally” for its customers.

However, chair of the cross-party group of MPs Nicky Morgan MP has written to Visa’s chief executive officer (Europe) Charlotte Hogg, demanding answers over what led to the failure.

Other questions put to Visa include how many people were affected, whether cardholders or merchants will be entitled to compensation, and what steps Visa will take to ensure a similar system failure does not happen again.

Visa would not tell Moneywise how many customers were affected by the outage or confirm whether compensation would be due when we asked yesterday.

Mrs Morgan has asked Ms Hogg to respond by 5pm on 15 June. She comments: “A third of all spending in the UK is processed by Visa. It’s deeply worrying, therefore, that such a vital part of the country’s payment infrastructure can fail so catastrophically.

“The consequences were sudden and severe. Many consumers and businesses were left stranded on Friday, unable to make or accept payments, with chaos reported in shops.

“The committee has asked Ms Hogg to answer its questions on the disruption. If it is not satisfied with the response, the committee may consider asking Ms Hogg to provide oral evidence.”

Comments

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

I think the important question is what back-up systems are in place for when this kind of failure occurs. I read that one supermarket continued to accept card payments by using the old imprinters and carbon copy paper sets. But it seems most supermarkets just refused to accept card payments and left their loyal customers to abandon their trolleys at the checkout. Do they really think they should treat customers like that?

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

Visa's outage makes a mockery of the cashless society. It would be prudent to keep five tenners in the back of our wallets.

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

Stuff happens but why do we continue to use the Americanism "outage". Power cut, hardware failure yes outage NO. We have a rich and expressive language Do not degrade it.

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