DBS Group Holdings Ltd is facing a second day of outages in its online banking services, marking one of the worst digital disruptions for Southeast Asia’s biggest lender in a decade.
The disruptions in DBS’s digital services — an area where the Singapore-based bank has invested in heavily — started early Tuesday and resurfaced on Wednesday. The problems stemmed from the bank’s access control servers, resulting in customers’ inability to log in to the services, country head Shee Tse Koon said in a video clip on its Facebook page.
“We acknowledge the gravity of the situation and as we work to resolve matters, we seek your patience and understanding,” Shee said. He apologized to customers and reassured them that their deposits are safe, adding that banking services at all its branches have been extended by two hours.
DBS in recent years has invested heavily to digitize its core banking business and set up new technology platforms. Such efforts have helped to boost the bank’s return-on-equity and have enabled the lender to reach more customers in all of its markets.
This week’s disruptions aren’t the first time DBS has experienced an outage in its banking services. In 2010, it set aside S$230 million ($168 million) in regulatory capital after these services failed for more than six hours following repairs. In 2018, rival Overseas-Chinese Banking Corp. had a glitch that impacted its automated teller machines and online banking systems for several hours over a weekend.
The outages come as DBS prepares to face new challengers with the arrival of more digital banks in the city-state next year. Grab Holdings Inc.’s venture with Singapore Telecommunications Ltd. and Sea Ltd. are among four firms that won permits from the Monetary Authority of Singapore.
Grab also suffered a technical glitch last week, which disrupted its ride-booking services in Singapore and some other Southeast Asian countries.