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  • rams 223 posts

    Hello. I’m going through a process with Barclays so asked for all the data they have on me. They didn’t share any internal emails they may have had discussing my accounts. Is that standard?

    Secondly – they sent me copies of chat transcripts and not call logs as requested – they only send the call logs after I complained to the CEO (after an email to the DPO was ignored for 3 weeks) and his office must have actioned it. But their DPO team clearly don’t take things seriously. The chat transcripts they sent included copies of correspondence between them and another customer. I included that in my complaint which they upheld and left it at that. Should they be doing more? It’s odd they never asked me to securely destroy the other client’s documents etc. I have a wider complaint that will go the financial ombudsman on Barclays so may include it in there or is this something for the ICO?

    JDB 4,130 posts

    @rams – I don’t know the subject matter of your complaint, but in general banks have quite a lot of carve-outs under the DPA and also ICO guidance particularly in relation to credit decisions. I would say however, that unless you have some very complex case that involves a lot of money – perhaps pensions or insurance, going down the DSAR route is usually the road to nowhere; it tends to wind up both parties and yield nothing.

    Unfortunately, some people see DSAR as some sort of threat or leverage vs an institution that will comply but consider the client vexatious making resolution much harder. If you do decide to proceed to the FOS, you need to keep it very factual and simple and they can’t make findings about the DPA issues.

    rams 223 posts

    @rams – I don’t know the subject matter of your complaint, but in general banks have quite a lot of carve-outs under the DPA and also ICO guidance particularly in relation to credit decisions. I would say however, that unless you have some very complex case that involves a lot of money – perhaps pensions or insurance, going down the DSAR route is usually the road to nowhere; it tends to wind up both parties and yield nothing.

    Unfortunately, some people see DSAR as some sort of threat or leverage vs an institution that will comply but consider the client vexatious making resolution much harder. If you do decide to proceed to the FOS, you need to keep it very factual and simple and they can’t make findings about the DPA issues.

    Thanks @JDB. Your advice here is really appreciated.

    My overall complaint relates to their communication around the closure of my accounts (immediate) which didn’t follow the terms they cited (30 days notice) – see page 13 https://www.barclays.co.uk/content/dam/documents/smart-investor/smartinvestorterms.pdf (their letter quoted account closed per terms of Section A clause 29.2). I have no issues incidentally that they wish to close my accounts – it is after all up to them who they want to do business with.

    What compounded the issue is their customer service or lack there of throughout this process – the correspondence relating to the closure arrived 2-3 weeks after it happened despite me calling numerous times and them saying a letter has been sent explaining what is going on and they can’t discuss for legal/regulatory reasons. This turned out to be lies told by various agents as I first called on 13th April when I noticed limited functionality on my account and then several times in the weeks after, yet the letter they sent was dated 26th April. If I had been told all of this on 13th April when I first called I would have transferred my accounts elsewhere immediately and not waited. The call transcripts they belatedly sent prove all of this including the hours wasted on the phone to a string of hopeless customer service agents who had to ask their “technical team” everything yet this team aren’t customer facing.

    Since looking to transfer the accounts elsewhere at end of April Barclays (and incidentally HL) have been hopeless and the transfer still hasn’t taken place. Barclays in the meantime have been charging me fees which their letter stated they wouldn’t.

    Barclays then gave me notice they were closing my current account and credit card. Again no issue – suspect related to the investment accounts – but amusingly I was being called by their Premier team even after then (Financial guide) to switch my mortgage to them! Despite being given this notice they then closed my accounts immediately without telling me – the letter arrived a few days later. This cost me £200 as I had started the process to switch to NatWest Premier. I will be claiming for this. Very odd to give notice to close and then to do it immediately.

    All in a total mess when you also include the data breach. I have lost out on plenty of returns in this period based on deals I would have placed, the current account switch bonus, and plenty of wasted time speaking to them on the phone. The matter is not yet sorted so I am waiting to make my complaint in full.

    Thanks for reading – any thoughts?

    Philondon 268 posts

    The chat transcripts they sent included copies of correspondence between them and another customer

    That is a data breach. I’d inform the ICO but I believe they have a big backlog of work so it might not be dealt with promptly.

    Philondon 268 posts

    They should also provide everything they have on you so, yes speak to the ICO about that too.

    JDB 4,130 posts

    Any data breach is a complete red herring and pursuing that angle will probably just annoy you and result in no sanction for Barclays.

    The first aspect of your complaint is that they closed your account immediately rather than giving you 30 days notice per 29.2 which they cited in the closure letter. The two following paragraphs 29.3 and 29.4 do give Barclays the right to close or suspend the account without notice, so it’s not clear whether the letter cited the wrong paragraph or they changed their minds. Anyone is entitled to make a mistake, but if they make a mistake, realistically they will only offer you a modest ex gratia sum for the inconvenience. You would need to prove some actual loss for any compensation to be owed. The decision to close the accounts is essentially unchallengeable.

    The second aspect is the delay in communication of the closure, but again, transcripts or no transcripts and even if they screwed up, they don’t owe you compensation unless you could prove loss directly attributable to their error.

    The third aspect is the delay in making the transfer to HL – I’m not sure what they say is the timescale of making transfers, but if it is in specie, it can take a long time and relies on both parties and I suspect Barclays will be quite well covered on this. There is no prospect of Barclays or the FOS awarding any compensation for profitable trades you might have made had the transfer been made more expeditiously. I’m sure that once you have made your full complaint, Barclays will refund the fees erroneously charged since closure.

    I’m not your what the £200 cost you mention re NatWest, but if it can directly be pinned on Barclays’ negligence, I think they will pay that without too much fuss.

    I wouldn’t focus too much on the rubbish service, but do refer to it as the bank’s repeated negligent handling of the notification/closure your accounts, the transfer and subsequent DSAR failure together being symptomatic of breaches of Principles 2, 6 and 7. Then list the actual financial losses, overcharged fees etc. occasioned by their negligent acts and then suggest a reasonable sum for the inconvenience and time wasted, a sum I fear might disappoint you! I would be thinking of c.£250.

    Blair Waldorf Salad 1,011 posts

    They should also provide everything they have on you so, yes speak to the ICO about that too.

    But does the OP know that the DSAR response was incomplete? Or are they merely speculating? If they have good grounds to expect that their case was discussed internally at Barclays, and that the omission of any emails of that nature is unusual, then there may be grounds to raise a complaint re an incomplete DSAR response.

    There’s absolutely zero point, honour or indeed propriety in using a breach of another customer’s data to leverage a better outcome in the OP’s oen case. On this I agree with JDB. At most, to satisfy himself that he has identified yet more poor processes by Barclays, the OP could inform Barclays of the wrong data being sent their way and expect Barclays to address in line with their obligations as a data controller. Not every breach needs to be reported to the ICO, despite popular opinion suggesting as much.

    rams 223 posts

    They should also provide everything they have on you so, yes speak to the ICO about that too.

    But does the OP know that the DSAR response was incomplete? Or are they merely speculating? If they have good grounds to expect that their case was discussed internally at Barclays, and that the omission of any emails of that nature is unusual, then there may be grounds to raise a complaint re an incomplete DSAR response.

    There’s absolutely zero point, honour or indeed propriety in using a breach of another customer’s data to leverage a better outcome in the OP’s oen case. On this I agree with JDB. At most, to satisfy himself that he has identified yet more poor processes by Barclays, the OP could inform Barclays of the wrong data being sent their way and expect Barclays to address in line with their obligations as a data controller. Not every breach needs to be reported to the ICO, despite popular opinion suggesting as much.

    Impossible to know 100% but given the constant reference to legal/regulatory reasons it is pretty evident a computer hasn’t decided to close the accounts. Therefore there will be some email traffic internally at Barclays containing my details. In fact I know Barclays call staff keep notes on my account which was also not shared.

    JDB 4,130 posts

    @rams – the thing is that there may possibly be some internal emails which may or may not be disclosable, but even if they were, where does that get you? The decision to close your account(s) was quite likely made by a human after your account was initially flagged by a machine. Unless there were some allegation of discrimination perhaps is the disclosure of any emails going to change the inconvenience payment you might receive. Banks/card companies have their own reasons for closing accounts, are not obliged to disclose the rationale and will not debate the matter. Your efforts are better directed towards a well structured/argued complaint and planning those trades once HL has received the transfer.

    Andrew. 455 posts

    Hello. I’m going through a process with Barclays so asked for all the data they have on me. They didn’t share any internal emails they may have had discussing my accounts. Is that standard?

    There might not have been any emails. People still use the phone to contact one another in the workplace, some teams also sit next to each other and discuss a client in person.

    Be warned though, if you’ve used a naughty word on a call, even when the agent was on mute and you thought they couldn’t hear you, that’s enough to warrant immediate closure.

    TheDoc 1 post

    Good morning everyone. I too am going through a very similar problem with Barclays UK. To keep this short I also experienced and account closure unless I could physically get to a branch or call them – both trample over protected disability rights. I am raising a DSAR as well. To my knowledge (limited to defence work) you can get even classified emails (which can be redacted) so I see no reason why Barclays would restrict any information. If they did then I say pursue it through the ICO. I will let you know how my case goes. Barclays have been dreadful. They are just best to be avoided (look at Trustpilot for their reviews). It seems from what you said that Barclays may have not been entirely honest in the SAR request.

    JDB 4,130 posts

    Good morning everyone. I too am going through a very similar problem with Barclays UK. To keep this short I also experienced and account closure unless I could physically get to a branch or call them – both trample over protected disability rights. I am raising a DSAR as well. To my knowledge (limited to defence work) you can get even classified emails (which can be redacted) so I see no reason why Barclays would restrict any information. If they did then I say pursue it through the ICO. I will let you know how my case goes. Barclays have been dreadful. They are just best to be avoided (look at Trustpilot for their reviews). It seems from what you said that Barclays may have not been entirely honest in the SAR request.

    As per the above poster, going through the SAR process is entirely pointless as it will change nothing.

    If you are alleging that Barclays has breached your rights as you are unable either to visit a branch or make a telephone by virtue of your disability, that is a totally different issue, but also one not resolved by a SAR.

    The requirement for you to visit or call is Barclays complying with its legal/regulatory obligations so is perfectly reasonable.

    Financial institutions have various exemptions from disclosure requirements and the law permits a bank to close your account without cause so it isn’t clear what it is you are seeking from Barclays or the ICO. What are are hoping will be revealed?

    I wouldn’t pay any attention to TrustPilot reviews of banks – it’s just a place people go to to whinge.

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