My readers will remember that I had to help my friend with getting his credit card deactivated. He just came to inform me, that he has finally received a letter from the Standard Chartered Bank that, his credit card account shows no outstanding payment and that the card has been deactivated. The letter arrived at his home this afternoon and you could see the relief on his face that this problem has been resolved.
There are some issues here that I would like to write about and hope that some responsible people at SCB read this and do something about it.
SCB has this to say about itself “Known and trusted for our high standards of corporate responsibility, we are committed to building a sustainable business through social inclusion, environmental protection and good governance.” I leave it to you to decide if they practice what they say they are committed to.
One- It has taken over three weeks for SCB to ensure that one of their oldest customers is given peace of mind. I suspect that this is because they do not know quite how some people can view a dangerous situation. Almost on a daily basis, there are newspaper items about credit card fraud. This is not good news for people who use credit card rarely and only as an alternative to carrying cash. They do not require credit. If they are high net worth individuals like my friend is, they worry that someone, even from the bank, as has been reported to have happened, can misuse a credit card and cause liability. The emails that I helped send to the bank have just been responded to by automated responses and there has been no email confirmation that the card has been deactivated. This is not good customer service.
Two- I understand that the original intention of the bank to ask for automatic debit to my friends account or electronic transfer service was based on the fear that Senior Citizens are prone to unexpected deaths and if this happens, the bank has to go through endless hassles to recover the dues debited to the card. If this is true, this is the most callous of reasons to announce such a change in policy through untrained and immature call center employees.
Three- There may well have been some cases of such problems created by the demise of some senior citizens. Proper study of the incidence of such cases and appropriate policy decisions taken and communicated effectively to the card holders would be a much better way of preventing such avoidable problems for Senior Citizens.
If you have Senior Citizens in your life advise them about this case. Let them be prepared for such treatments from mechanized banks.
I long for the personal touch of the old fashioned banks. All of them are now getting into mechanized banking and are becoming impersonal. Sad. What do you think about this development?