Ever heard of U0B bank? Yes, the one with the zero in the name…
- This story was initially published in LinkedIn on January 25, 2018 https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/ever-heard-u0b-bank-yes-one-zero-name-roberto-capodieci/
Read the funny story of how a hand filled form made me a C2podieci (rather than a Capodieci), and how I saved myself from waiting weeks to get the issue solved, avoiding the process that requires an original signed form to be sent via mail from Indonesia to Singapore just to fix the bank’s mistake and let me use my internet banking.
2018 A.D. — Humans invented computers, we should be in the digital era, yet… forms are hand filled at the bank. Why? I thought it was to have a calligraphic sample of the client, to see if another handwritten form in the future is a fraud or is authentic. Yet, the kind bank employee filled the forms for me, handwriting it, so the calligraphs sample theory fails. Maybe there is a law that requires a certain portion of the forms to be handwritten to be valid, but hey, we are in 2018… we know how to type at the computer better than how we know how to write. An “a” typed at the computer will always be an “a”, while writing it, based on calligraphy, can be interpreted as a “d”, a “2”, a “z”, or, if you go to my doctor, as a hieroglyphic.
On her desk, moving her computer keyboard on the side to have enough space to write with a pen in the freshly printed form, the bank employee kept asking me questions while writing for me rather than filling the PDF form at her computer, to then print it already filled. I am sure it is not her fault, she must have been instructed to do so by the bank, and she is following the instructions given to her.
The information of such handwritten forms, or all the data from the faxes sent to the bank, are NOT entered in the bank system by the same person that has handwritten them. They are sent to remote locations where data entry teams type them in, often, to protect privacy, each person only type a small part of the form, missing the full context. The reason why forms are to be filled handwriting the content remains to me a mystery.
Here what did happen to me, and how I solved the problem.
My name is Roberto Capodieci, as most of you know. and my email address is very obvious to decode. It is not a firstname.lastname@example.org, but it is a more obvious email@example.com, thing that, right after reading my name in the same form, should come out easy. Still, a data entry personnel of the UOB bank (or of a service provider the UOB bank uses) entered it as firstname.lastname@example.org
I had open a bank account last December with UOB, and today I finally got the token to access my internet banking. To activate my internet banking service, I had to receive a code from the bank via email.
As I started the activation procedure I been presented with this surprise. Ironically to update the typo caused by misreading an handwritten email address, I am asked to download a form, print it, fill it in — yes, handwriting the correct email — and mail it back to the bank. Been there, done that: the mail from Indonesia to Singapore can take up to 3 weeks. The activation of the internet banking has a deadline that can arrive before the mail gets to the bank… so I had to find a solution, fast.
Yes, I invested 8 dollars to buy the c2podieci.com domain name :) How smart of me lol
I immediately set my name servers on the domain,
I cloned the settings of the original domain name,
I added c2podieci.com as an alias of the main domain,
and it worked like magic! The activation process didn’t even time out while waiting for me to do all this! And…
I got in my internet banking today, without having to wait a few more weeks for form traveling via mail internationally.
Now, when will regulators let banks upgrade to better systems? We daily use digital signatures in blockchains, we send PGP signed emails. Why we are still stuck to faxes and form to be filled by hand instead that with a keyboard?
If some of you knows why, please share the reasons!