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HSBC's computer mess

It's been a tough week so far for the technical folks at HSBC Bank USA.
     The Delaware-based bank, formerly Buffalo-based Marine Midland Bank and still the largest in Western New York, suffered a major computer failure that prevented customers from getting their money.
     On Monday, customers reported that the online banking system was down, with no way to access accounts over the Internet. That access was later restored, but the balances were still not being updated Tuesday evening.
     Meanwhile, branch customers were finding that the bank staff didn't know how much money they had in their accounts. So while small withdrawals and transactions seemed to be going through, anything over $500 was being held up or denied until the bank could straighten the situation out.
     The bank said it's fixed the problem, but still isn't sure what caused it. It plans to spend the next several weeks finding out.

--Jonathan D. Epstein

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