Various news media reported that Bank of America's online banking services went down on Friday from about 0700 to 1715 EST.
A BoA spokesperson said that only a minority of customers could not access its online banking services, although those who could found the website to be very slow. Its ATMs were working normally, however.
The spokesperson attributed the problems to an overnight "routine systems change." No further details were provided.
Last August 27th, BoA's online banking system went down which was attributed to an equally ambiguous "temporary system issue" explanation.
Before that, BoA's online banking services went down on the 23rd of July.
BoA's online banking system also went down in January 2010 (as well as in September 2008 (another "temporary system issue" excuse) and April 2007).
In addition, some Bank of America customers in North Carolina had problems last week with their regular bank accounts because of bad weather in Charlotte, North Carolina, BoA's headquarters.
According to this under-reported story at television station WNCN (aka NBC17) in Raleigh, North Carolina, some local BoA customers complained that bank deposits they made on Monday the 10th of January initially appeared in their accounts but then the deposits disappeared, in some cases causing over-drafts to occur.
The bank reportedly blamed a "computer glitch", but then added this confusing statement:
"Due to the inclement weather, there may have been a delay in posting deposits. Transactions are business as usual now. If a customer accrues overdraft fees as a result of the weather delayed deposits, we will make them whole."
BoA, per usual, was not forthcoming on exactly what happened or why, or how many of its customers were affected.
Robert N. Charette is a Contributing Editor to IEEE Spectrum and an acknowledged international authority on information technology and systems risk management. A self-described “risk ecologist,” he is interested in the intersections of business, political, technological, and societal risks. Charette is an award-winning author of multiple books and numerous articles on the subjects of risk management, project and program management, innovation, and entrepreneurship. A Life Senior Member of the IEEE, Charette was a recipient of the IEEE Computer Society’s Golden Core Award in 2008.