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OP: Reimbursement for late payment fees in wake of online attack

OP-Pohjola bank says it will reimburse interest payments resulting from late payments in the wake of the denial of service attack on its system.

Ihminen pankkiautomaatilla.
Saturday was the fourth day of the service denial attack on OP-Pohjola's online banking services. Image: Yle

On Saturday night OP-Pohjola bank customers were still unable to access online banking services from abroad owing to the denial of service attack that started on Wednesday night and had at the time of writing continued for 4 days.

On Saturday the bank opened a telephone service line, which has been ringing off the hook with inquiries from customers abroad who haven’t been able to access their accounts via online banking for several days.

Through the service number it’s possible to pay bills, transfer funds and even purchase a return flight ticket home by providing online banking codes to the operator.

”We don’t have exact numbers on how many of our customers are abroad. As this is a vacation period, there are plenty of people on holidays abroad who may be having difficulties,” says communications director Silja Nikkanen.

She says that the bank will reimburse customers who face late fee payments on bills they have been unable to pay owing to the attack. 

“The principle is that direct damages such as interest on late payments will be reimbursed,” says Nikkanen.

Nordea up and running

Nordea's online banking was working again on Saturday after it also experienced a denial of service attack on Friday.

According to Nordea spokesperson Marko Mettenranta: “We're still monitoring the situation very closely as we don’t know the intention of the attackers.”

Despite the cyber attacks, both OP and Nordea say their customers' money is safe, even if they've been unable to access funds during the service denial attacks.

When asked whether OP-Pohjola's security measures were weak, Nikkanen says she doesn't think so.

“On the whole, Finnish banks have very good security systems. But let’s wait and see what we find out,” says Nikkanen referring to the ongoing police investigation into the matter.

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