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HSBC Blues

For years, I'd been quite happy with my Internet Banking from HSBC. So I wasn't too worried when they told me my company had to be migrated to the new HSBCnet web portal. The move would take two to three days during which I'd have no Internet access to my account. Stage one went smoothly- they had no trouble at all disabling my old portal. Stage two, enabling the new, was more of a challenge apparently, as it took them forty days (and forty nights no doubt) to re-enable my access and necessitated no fewer than three trips to Dubai (from Doha) to sign various papers and finally collect the new security device.
Then came the real challenge- working out how to use the new portal. There's no doubt that it is more flexible and powerful than its clean and easy predecessor. If I were an accounts manager for a large corporation I'd probably be delighted with it. But for a small company with a single account, its layer upon layer of complexity is overkill with a vengeance. For example, before I could transfer some cash to my personal account (very necessary after forty days in the banking wilderness) I had to:

  • Assign all our accounts (we have only one) to an account group called 'A'
  • Declare a maximum daily transfer limit between all the accounts in group 'A'.
  • Declare a maximum daily transaction limit between accounts in Group 'A' and elsewhere.
  • As System Administrator, assign myself to a user group of one person (me)
  • Authorise my user group to effect payments and transfers on Account Group 'A'
  • Assign my own signing limit within this user group for transfers and payments.
Intuitive, huh?

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