by George Nott

New Payments Platform PayID feature suffers day one wobbles

Feb 14, 2018
APIsBig DataCollaboration Software

Banking customers attempting to create their PayID – a feature of the newly launched New Payments Platform – were hit with error messages and delays yesterday as the addressing database behind it suffered ‘temporary congestion’.

The NPP has been described as a ‘secure set of rails’ between participating financial institutions which allows money to be transferred in near real time between them, via the Reserve Bank of Australia.

A key feature of the platform – which launched at a minute past midnight yesterday – is Pay ID. Rather than requiring someone’s BSB and account number in order to transfer money to them, a PayID can be used instead.

This can be a mobile number, email address, ABN number or something else, depending on the bank.

At present the Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) is the only major bank to have enabled payments on the platform, with others have indicated they will in coming weeks and months. Many banks, however, have been encouraging customers to create a PayID in preparation.

As many individuals sought to do so yesterday – perhaps inspired by the goldfish-headed man of the adverts – a number encountered severe delays and errors.

Customers of Bank Australiawere told: “PayID is currently experiencing connectivity issues across the entire network, these issues should be resolved shortly”.

At ING Bank, those trying to create a PayID were warned: “This PayID can’t be created just yet due to a technical error. We’re onto a fix, and suggest trying again in two hours, please.”

NAB customers were given the error message: “Oh! That didn’t work. We couldn’t create your PayID. Give it a minute and have another go.”

The issue is understood to relate to the ‘addressing database’ which links a customer’s bank account number to their PayID.

A spokesperson for the NPP confirmed to CIO Australia, however, that “the PayID platform was not unavailable for any part of yesterday”.

“A small number of the initial 60 participating financial institutions experienced temporary congestion for a short period of time registering some PayIDs as the system managed peak demand, in line with its design,” they explained.

The database (along with the intra-bank messaging channel and payments gateway)was developedby SWIFT, nine banks and three payment facilitators. SWIFT describes the database as a ‘proxy addressing lookup service allowing payment routing based on personal identifiers’.

“The technology and design that underpins the New Payments Platform is world leading and highly scalable, positioning it well to respond to this initial period of peak demand as people create their PayIDs,” the NPP spokesperson added.

“A surge in registrations and payments on Day One was somethingthe platform was designed tomanage, andshows that consumers are interested in seeking the benefits ofPayID. Each participating financial institution has their own process for managing a surge in customer interest,” they said.