Ubank: Aussie’s $580,000 live savings disappear from bank account

A Western Australian man is terrified he has lost his savings – a whopping $580,000 – after receiving two unexpected emails from his bank that the entire amount had been debited and his account closed.

But Bruce, who didn’t want his last name used, never authorized any transaction and has no idea where his money went. He adds that he can’t get answers from the “space cadets” who run Ubank’s customer service.

Ubank has confirmed to news.com.au that the emails are legitimate and not a scam.

Bruce fears the stress of the experience could have serious health consequences as he spent at least 20 hours on the phone with Ubank trying to get an answer.

“I could have a heart attack from this. I’m generally a laid-back guy, but I’m panicking and it’s definitely not good for my health,” he told news.com.au.

The nightmare began when Bruce received an email from Ubank on November 24 saying, “I just want to let you know that we have processed a charge to your account for $578,759.53.”

Just four seconds later, a follow-up email revealed that Bruce’s account was now closed.

“That’s my savings. I’m a self-funded retiree and…if I had to go to the hospital or have surgery it very well could have been my life fund and I’m totally screwed because I can’t access it no matter where it is,” he said. .

“It drives me crazy. Everyone I talk to just can’t believe it.

“No one from Ubank has told me or assured me that it’s a glitch, the money is safe, it’s all OK. No one has been able to confirm that to me.

“There is nothing concrete and there are no emails, no apologies, no acknowledgment that there is an issue that they will deal with in the next 24 hours and it has been 11 days and I am fine. I can’t eat, I can’t sleep, my wife is going crazy and the kids are on my back.”

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The 73-year-old said when he first received the emails he didn’t “panic” but logged into his account only to discover his bank balance was at zero.

He called Ubank and was initially told that the emails should not have gone out and that it would be resolved in the morning.

But 11 days later nothing has changed and Bruce has no idea where his money is, despite spending between 15 and 20 hours on the phone with Ubank customer service last week.

“It’s like a black hole. I can’t get hold of a sensible person who knows exactly what’s going on,” he added.

The father-of-two said he had had an account with Ubank for about eight years and had not received any new details about a new account – despite the bank going through a massive change.

Hundreds of other customers have expressed how “disgusted” and “frustrated” they are about upgrades, which have made it difficult to get their money’s worth – although the cases reported have not been as severe as Bruce’s experience.

Ubank, started in 2008 and operating under the license of NAB, has been criticized by several customers for being forced to get a new BSB, account numbers and debit cards as part of a merger with another bank.

For Bruce, who has worked as an engineer for decades, he just wants some answers.

“You work for 40 years and think you have enough money to live on and do what you want to do, and then a big chunk of it is gone — scared — and you can’t access it,” he said.

“I’m at my wits end and no one should be treated the way I’ve been treated. It’s unbelievable.”

A Ubank spokesperson could not say where Bruce’s money went, adding that due to confidentiality requirements, they cannot talk about specific clients.

“However, Ubank is working with customers who are affected,” they said.

It comes when another Ubank customer suddenly became “overwhelmed” with stress and burst into tears after access to her $40,000 account was suddenly cut off.

The Sydney woman said she had an “absolutely horrible” experience that left her feeling like a “criminal”.

She left her “with not even a dollar” to her name and forced her to set up a new account at a different bank.

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