Advik, a trainee engineer, decided to transfer Rs 15,000 online to his sister Kayra’s account on her birthday. This was his first experience of transferring money online. He added Kayra to beneficiary list and executed the transaction. Advik was expecting a happy call from Kyra but got anxious when he did not receive any response for two days. When he called her to know the reason, he got a shock to know that Kayra never received the money.
Where did the money go? As he got a message from the bank that “the fund has been successfully transferred to the beneficiary’s account. But as Kyra didn’t get it, to whose account the money was transferred?
This clearly indicates that the money has been transferred to a wrong account. He is worried and wondering the way out.
To solve the issue we first need to understand what went wrong?
The two reasons behind the wrong money transfer are:
- Added the wrong account number
According to the RBI norms, for electronic fund transfer only the beneficiary’s account number is taken into consideration. The name and IFSC code are used for the second level of confirmation, if required.
If, by mistake we miss out a digit or type a wrong number, even after entering a right payee name, the money will get transferred into a wrong account. However, if you have entered an account number that does not exist, the money transferred will be refunded automatically.
- Technical glitch
At times, a wrong money transfer could be just because of some technical glitch. In the year 2015 itself, banks like the State Bank of India, RBS and Indian Overseas Bank became the victims of technical glitch. In such a case, the money transferred to a wrong account is automatically refunded to the customer within 5–7 working days.
How to deal with such a situation?
Approach the bank with a written request for the return of money transferred to a wrong account number. Here, the bank will check the details of the beneficiary and if the person holds an account with the same branch, the bank can request him to return the money.
If in case, the beneficiary’s account is in different bank or branch, the erroneous transaction can be reversed through this three level escalation process-
- Meet the branch manager and initiate a written or e-mail request to the branch concerned (beneficiary’s bank branch) to take required actions for returning the amount.
- Raising complaint – If your branch or the concerned branch is not helping you, reach the banking ombudsman (BO) appointed by the Reserve Bank of India for the resolution of your complaint.
- Legal action – For a wrong beneficiary who does not allow the reversal of money, a legal action can also be initiated from your end, if you have the required details of the wrong beneficiary.
Precautions to take while making online fund transfer
Prevention is better than cure. So, spend an extra minute on the details entered rather than spending days in geting the transaction reversed. For reassurance, try the following steps.
- Find and match – As per RBI, every bank asks for the beneficiary’s account number twice before adding them to your bank savings account. This reduces the chances of making errors. So, for double assurance:
- Enter the required details and press “Ctrl+F” for the search box on the same browser page.
- Copy the account number from your email id or wherever mentioned and paste it in the search box of the net banking page where you are adding the beneficiary details.
- If you have entered the correct account number, the box will highlight the digits and show the count of similar source.
- Verification– We actually check the account number digits in our writing style, i.e. from left to right, where the numbers seem to be familiar and correct. But, it is advised to check the account number from right to left so that you don’t miss out a single digit.
- Small transfer– Before you make a big transaction, it is better to transfer a small amount and confirm with the beneficiary if they have received the amount.