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Al Rayan bows to pressure and delays plans to switch off online banking again

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Al Rayan has pushed back its plan to shut down its online banking service for the second time, following “feedback from customers”.

The Sharia-compliant bank first unveiled plans last summer to switch to mobile banking, forcing new and existing customers to download its app to carry out transactions. Customers are still able to use the bank’s branch network and telephone banking.

Last week, it set a deadline of 26 February for getting the app but this date was pushed back to 4 March. Today it has confirmed it has extended the time to register for the app to Friday 13 March.

After last week’s announcement, customers took to social media to say they were unhappy by the move to mobile banking, adding that they had only been given a few days’ notice.

What Al Rayan customers need to know

All personal banking customers using online savings and current account products will need to download the app to compatible devices – this means at least version 12 (iOS) and version 8 (Android).

Concerns were originally raised about how savers with older smartphones would access and manage their accounts.

Al Rayan said existing banking customers only will be eligible for a ‘hard-token device’ which will allow them to continue to access accounts via a computer. This is a small handheld device which enables customers to scan an on screen validation code and enter a PIN.

Customers can order the free ‘hard token’ device by calling 0800 408 6407 or using its callback service.

An Al Rayan Bank spokesperson, said: “Following feedback from our customers, we’ve extended the time to register for the new app or a hard token device until 13 March. Customers will still be able to register for the new app any time after 13 March and all of their banking arrangements – including their account number, sort code and any standing orders or Direct Debits they have set up – will remain the same, but they will not be able to view accounts online after 13 March until they have registered for the new app or hard token device.”

Al Rayan said it has increased the number of contact centre staff to help customers registering for the new mobile banking service.

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