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Banks cross ‘social’ boundaries on your Facebook wall

Banks in the UAE

It's a normal day at the office, you check your email and then your Facebook; only to find that your bank has written a warning statement on your wall revealing all your details...

August 5, 2012 3:22 by

Saying that several banks in the UAE run their game with what can only be described as ‘mob-mentality’ is certainly not passive aggressive but rather, provoked.

“The bank is surely not permitted to approach me through social-networking sites. It should have sent me mail or come to my workplace,” says Mr Pinto, a Dubai resident.. “In 2010, I had a tough time financially and owed some money to the bank, which I was paying regularly,” he explained to The National, a story that caught Kipp’s eye amid our ever-lasting frustration with the local banking methods in the country.

While he has insisted that he had not deliberately avoided any calls or emails, the bank had taken the liberty to hiring had a private agency to track down his family in India with threats rather than to approach it in an ordinary professional way. The bank also posted personal account details on his Facebook wall and a statement that declares that he still owes them an amount, much to his family’s confusion and panic.

Social networks are being used to track down bank customers, police suspects and used as evidence in court. What comes next? Will a Facebook marriage be declared a legally binding contract soon?

The banks in the UAE must realize that there are laws that govern their activity just as there are laws that govern ours and that other methods (aside from a ‘mob-like’ knock on the door). Recently, the UAE Central Bank had announced that no banks operating in the country are allowed to take action against a customer or freeze his/her account or assets unless three consecutive payments are not paid.

The statement was clear, yet the message seems to have gone unheeded and banking regulations continue to harass and bully customers.

Central Bank, can you throw us a net down here?

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