Singapore DBS’s digital services hit days after central bank ban ends

DBS Group Holdings Ltd. was hit by renewed disruptions to its internet banking and payment services in Singapore on Thursday, days after a six-month ban by the island’s central bank over similar glitches ended.

“We are aware that our customers are experiencing issues with DBS/POSB digibank Online and Mobile, DBS PayLah!,” the lender said in a statement on Facebook. “We have identified the issue and have activated measures to recover the services.”

The disruptions came two days after Singapore’s financial regulator announced an end to the six-month ban on non-essential activities it had imposed on the country’s biggest bank.

While the Monetary Authority of Singapore has imposed penalties on DBS including higher capital requirements totalling S$1.6 billion (US$1.2 billion) for similar service disruptions since 2022, the regulator’s action last year including the ban was the most stringent to-date.

The Monetary Authority of Singapore’s headquarters. Photo: Reuters

DBS separately slashed Chief Executive Officer Piyush Gupta’s compensation by S$4.1 million in 2023 following the outages.

The MAS had lifted the ban this week, citing improvements and progress to overcome shortcomings. Earlier Thursday, the lender delivered better-than-expected results thanks to strong lending and wealth fees, sending its shares up by 1.9 per cent at close. That lifted DBS’s market capitalisation to S$101 billion, making it the first Singapore-listed company to cross that threshold.

Complaints about the latest service disruption surged from about 5:40pm local time on the Downdetector website, which tracks online outages.

DBS said customers can continue to use their credit and debit cards to make payments, while urging wealth clients to contact their relationship managers to place trades.

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