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Wells Fargo Online Banking Suffers Second Outage in a Week

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Wells Fargo’s online and mobile banking services are down Thursday, six days after a similar outage. Customers reported their debit cards being declined.

The website of Wells Fargo Advisors had this posting for investor clients up throughout the day: “Some customers may be experiencing issues accessing online and mobile banking. We apologize for any inconvenience.”

On Wells Fargo’s webpage as of 2:45 p.m. Eastern Time, bank clients were being told: “We’re experiencing some technical difficulties. We apologize for the inconvenience as some of our web pages are temporarily unavailable. You can still access your accounts through one of the links below … .”

At 12:45 p.m. Eastern Time, the bank said on Twitter: “We’re experiencing system issues due to a power shutdown at one of our facilities, initiated after smoke was detected following routine maintenance. We’re working to restore services as soon as possible. We apologize for the inconvenience.”

This message came about four hours after Wells Fargo, which has about 70 million customers worldwide, first asked clients for patience early Thursday.

According to ABC/Fox News in Montana, the affected bank facility is a server farm in Shoreview, Minnesota, which reported activation of its fire-suppression system.

As was the case last week, there was plenty of outrage about Wells Fargo’s system outage on Twitter.

Meanwhile, Bitcoin enthusiasts took advantage of the chance to tout the benefits of decentralized networks.

“In case anyone is frustrated with the Wells’s Fargo mobile banking network being down, I feel I should tell you the network is up and running and has been for more than 10 years,” lawyer Bryan Jacoutot tweeted.

New Leadership

The tech problems come only about two weeks after new leadership was hired with the aim of improving the bank’s image and accountability after several years of scandals and negative headlines.

(Click here for A Timeline of the Wells Fargo Scandals)

Steve Troutner — who earlier worked at Citigroup, Bank of America and Wachovia — was tapped to head the community bank’s U.S. Western region. Nyron Latif from Goldman Sachs became head of operations for wealth and investment-management unit.

And it appears that the addition of a new head of technology may need to be sped up. Wells Fargo named Saul Van Beurden, who recently was JPMorgan’s chief information officer of consumer and community banking, to the post in January. But at the time, the bank said he would not be on board until April.

Q4 Earnings

Fourth-quarter results at Wells Fargo were a mixed bag, as the bank topped earnings estimates but fell short on revenue. Its advisor headcount dropped again, and CEO Tim Sloan says the bank will operate under Federal Reserve-imposed growth restrictions through year-end.

As of Dec. 30, Wells Fargo has 13,968 advisors, down nearly 600 from a year ago and over 100 from the prior quarter. Since the bank’s fake-accounts scandal erupted in fall 2016, when it had 15,086 registered reps, the bank’s wealth unit has lost 1,118 advisors.

— Check out When Will Wells Fargo’s Scandals End? on ThinkAdvisor.


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