CIMB incurs RM280m loss from payments glitch

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CIMB Group Holdings Bhd said it incurred a credit loss of RM280.9 million in 2021 due to a processing error that saw excess funds deposited into thousands of customer accounts.


CIMB, which counts sovereign wealth fund Khazanah Nasional Bhd as its largest shareholder, discovered the problem this year that related to a third-party remittance service, group CEO Abdul Rahman Ahmad said in a statement, confirming a report by Bloomberg News.

The group was taking steps to recover the duplicate payments from the affected customers and an “additional and lower final provision amount may be taken in the first quarter of 2022” depending on the recovery, Rahman said while releasing the bank’s fourth quarter and full-year earnings.

CIMB reported net income of RM4.3 billion in 2021, its strongest annual figure since 2019, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Bank Negara Malaysia had asked the lender to provide “reasonable options” for customers to return the excess money, central bank governor Nor Shamsiah Mohd Yunus had told reporters earlier this month.

She said the central bank would take appropriate supervisory and enforcement actions on CIMB if its findings revealed any breach of legal or regulatory requirements.

CIMB’s technical glitch comes as Southeast Asian banks come under scrutiny over issues with their digital infrastructure.

In December, about 790 customers of Singapore’s Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp lost a total of S$13.7 million (RM42.37 million) in scams. A month earlier, thousands of DBS Group Holdings Ltd’s customers were unable to log onto its online and mobile platforms.

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