Over the past few weeks, there has been growing frustration among people using the online banking App, mBoB, provided by the Bank of Bhutan (BoB).
This is not the first time that mBoB has been causing problems for its users. In September 2022, the Royal Monetary Authority (RMA) imposed a penalty of Nu 6.2 million on BoB when the system failed for around three days.
Tshering who is a sales executive at Sales Bazaar, a clothing shop in Thimphu town, said, “The customers don’t carry cash these days. They usually depend on the online transactions like mBoB and other services, however, a maximum of customers use mBoB, which often gives issues. I feel like there’s a pattern of issue timing, such as it doesn’t work, especially after 3pm in the evening. It’s challenging to determine whether it’s mBoB or B-Mobile service causing the disruptions.”
According to an official from BoB, “The mBoB service encountered significant fluctuations on 21 October 2023, impacting customers across the country and beyond. This disruption, occurring on a Saturday evening at 6pm and lasted until 3 am on 22 October 2023, led to inconveniences and challenges for customers, especially in terms of payment services. The bank would like to apologize for the inconveniences caused to all the customers.”
A grocery store owner in Babesa, Nima, shared her frustrations, stating that mBoB has become a major issue to deal with in her business. She said it is a common occurrence that bank transactions often fail or go through twice, particularly during the evenings and on Sundays.
A customer also shared a bad experience with the service, “Last Saturday, I was shopping at a clothing store, and when I was about to pay for the clothes, however, the mBoB service was down. I had to abandon the clothing purchase due to mBoB service issues and returned the next day to complete the transaction.”
BoB stated that old issues did not cause the mBoB service disruption because such issues have been addressed. However, BoB agreed that the bank has disappointed the customers, in terms of service reliability, but BoB is committed to improving its service reliability. The bank emphasized its dedication to providing a stable and consistent service by investing in IT infrastructure and enhancing its HR capabilities.
The bank clarified that the disruptions are not due to security concerns, but are caused by technical glitches. The bank said it holds ISO 27001:2013 certification for Information Security Management System.