Skip to main content

Metis Talent Management brand new website goes live

Last fortnight was a joy, as we came to the launch of Metis Talent Management's website. Metis is a Singapore based organisation that advises clients on Talent Management with a primary focus on Talent Development and Organisation Design. Best wishes to team Metis!

The other great thing is how folks at Metis approached this by going in for a full overhaul, including getting a new logo and brand colours. Do leave your comments on what you feel about the website and the logo!!

Online Banking@ICICI Bank: Beware

Few months back, a friend of mine sought to transfer some money from his ICICI Bank account to to my ICICI Bank account. We choose the most convenient route, which was an online transfer. Was it that that convenient indeed?. Read on.

It so appeared that the account number I sent by mail to my friend was wrong by exactly one digit. A real costly mistake indeed. My unsuspecting friend promptly executed two transfers and the money, a sum of few thousand rupees, landed in a third account, which wasn't his intention.

As soon as we learnt of the error, we reported to ICICI Bank, and surprising enough, this completely wired bank decided that this cannot be reported to the call center. One has to visit the branch. So be it we said, and dutifully filed a written report at the ICICI Branch where my friend has his account. We were advised, that the Bank would seek to reach out the third account holder, and after his/her permission , reverse the transaction. Not so simple. For months, my friend kept following up with the ICICI Bank staff by phone.In the course of this period, the bank kept saying that the delay is because the customer has not updated his/her telephone number and not responding to postal communication.

We then visited the branch once again. We were pointed out that bank really cannot give any SLAs on rectifying this error, since the error has happened from the customer side. Also, that the receiving account was short by 'some amount'. We also learnt that this is not an unheard of occurrence at that branch.

The error happened because in ICICI Online Banking money transfer, there is no payee validation mechanism to ensure if the account indeed belongs to the person who you are seeking to transfer the money to. A paper instrument, bears the payee account name, and has to be deposited along with the correct account number. In case of a mismatch, it would not be processed. In ICICI online system, it just vanishes behind a number. So risky.

So with much follow-up, a major part of the money was transferred to my friend's account, which I helpfully took from my friend, and the mode chosen was non electronic. The deficiency of an amount of over thousand rupees, one understands, is because the wrong payee had that much deficit in his/her account. So, whatever he/she owed to ICICI Bank for whatever reasons has now become my friend's liability and therefore, mine.Cool!

We were told, in slightly coated words, that the Bank has taken some precautionary steps to prevent such an error, and we have neglected that. The hint was to an sms message that goes to the payer whenever he/she adds a new payee to make a transfer. The sms contains a numeric code, which has to be keyed in to complete the process. According to the bank, we should have noticed the error at this stage. I am tempted to challenge this. A real validation would happen only if the sms comes to the payee who would pass it on to the payer.

So, next time you are about to make an online payment via ICICI Bank, look at the good old cheque leaf as a valued alternative. Or consider transferring an amount of 10 rupees first, call up the other party and check if they received the same. Do not assume fancy systems to be more robust and foolproof. An application is only as good as the process design given to the programmer.


Earlier ICICI Bank had a provision that if you key in the account number, the account holder name is also used to appear.That served as the best validation.But thats past. I don't know why ICICI Bank removed that provision.

Now the only alternative is to be more careful while typing in the account number. I do transfer money to various accounts often.But I will ensure that I check the receiver's account number 1000 times!
Rohit Tiku said…
Dear Rajesh,
It is like depositing a cheque with the wrong a/c number.
Just imagine the effort you would have taken there also for getting the payment back.
Currently there are lots of safeguards in place to ensure that such errors do not take place.
In any case, the process for reversal is cumbersome and rightly so.
If it is "too conveneient", then I can assure you that the extent of misuse would be tremendous... After all there are many ingenious people around who are not just waiting for such oportunities but actually go to the extent of even planning them..
Sara said…
I use UTI-now AXIS bank,there you can verify the name behind the account.Once I was on the verge of doing the blunder, had it not been with the name associated with the account.BTW, I am a big fan of AXIS, they are so customer-friendly and even overseas, I dont have any problem with them ever.
HARISH'Z said…
Hi Rajesh,

I am exactly in the same situation right now. I am supposed to transfer 15000 to my friend's account. Since, he is not having an icici bank account, he gave one of his colleague's account number.
After transfering the amount, my friend's colleague didnt receive the credit. Later, he verified the account number and informed me that it was an incorrect account number that was provided to me. I already gave a written complaint and also got to hear the same cock and bull story from the bank that they have to take the consent of credit party to debit their account. Any suggestions on the course of action based on your past experience.
Rajesh Kumar said…
@ MS Vivek Chaitanya: Thanks for the comment. ICICI probably feels that privacy would be compromised if they have a system where people can see the names behind the accounts.

@ Rohit: Thanks mate.

@ Sara: Happy customer speaketh!

@ Harish'z: Pray twice everyday and keep following up.And say more prayers. And be optimistic.The Lord is not so bad.
Amit said…
I think another aspect to see is the the Knowledge of the frontend Staff dealing with the customer. Are they knowledgeable? Are they capable? If not then consumer has to be very careful before availing the service from these banks...I am experiencing that Staffs at these banks are just data entry operators without much knowledge and power to take decision. Customer are mostly said that head office will decide, mail will be sent bla bla …

Popular posts from this blog

CIO India is launched but wondering who gets copies.

While International Media GroupIDG has brought one of its most popular IT publications for managers CIO, subscribing to it is a pain. The first issue of CIO India was published in Nov 2005 and according to IDG, currently distributes 6000 copies across India. I wonder who gets them.Having followed US edition of CIO (It is absolutely first rate) for a while now, I was quite delighted to know there is an Indian edition too. However, try to subscribe to a paper copy. First, there is no concept of paid subscription. One need to register a request for a print subscription, and that begins an endless wait to hear whether your subscription was approved or not. (I registered in May 2007 and am still waiting to hear back from them!). And no, CIO does not sell off the shelf, it only comes into your letter box.I wish this subscription request and acceptance process is improved significantly if CIO India has to indeed make a mark. I have sent multiple emails over the last three quarters and follow…

ISRO Chandrayan landing on the moon indeed?

The newspapers, television and radio are screaming- Indian Space Programme goes commercial and likes. Indeed, after decades of research, our scientists are all set to do a commercial launch- a 309 kg Italian satellite would be lobbed into a polar orbit this afternoon on board a PSLV rocket. This is a low orbit satellite would find its position somewhere 300 kms above the ground and orbit earth every 90 minutes or so. Communication satellites of any real worth - running communication channels and costing megabucks - operate in geo stationary orbit at about 36000 kms, and they must be transported to 8000 kms by rockets.These satellites weigh 3-4 tonnes.This is where the real money is. The US space programme and Arianne rockets compete heavily in this commercial space. China and Japan have their own programmes and at least China does not outsource the launches though not sure about Japan. India's own GSLV is far from ready, even after burning time and money and couple of Russian engi…

Calling for a unified Do-Not-Call registry in India

Like most of us who get unsolicited and unwanted telemarketing calls selling everything from a personal loan to credit card to a new telephone connection, I too get such calls everyday, whether I am in meeting, travelling, or working on document etc. Many such calls come from India's leading banks.The interesting part is that, I have already registered for DNC on their website. While some of these companies give you a request number, others merely say thanks, and you get nothing, no email confirmation, no request number. These companies also helpfully add that it might take them 3 months to remove the number from their list. The calls do not stop though. Consider this. At eleven AM I get a call from some telecaller, who wants to sell credit cards to me. First of all, they ask me if I hold a credit card from another bank. It really cheeses me off. Why should be I talking about my financial arrangements to any TDH who calls me without invitation.That's when I ask them if they hea…