Hurricane keeps Western Union offline

  • Delay: Alvin Wilson, of Western Union

Western Union’s systems are still offline despite having being scheduled to be back up and running today — causing anxiety among some customers.

Alvin Wilson, owner of the local branch of the global money transfer business, said the software that needs to be updated for the ongoing upgrade is in Miami, Florida — where emergency preparations are under way as Hurricane Irma approaches.

Mr Wilson said: “ I do apologise for the company that is doing the updates is in located in Miami where there is a hurricane pending. This is holding up the process.

“Our team in Bermuda are working hard to rectify this and get information to when the systems will be up and running.”

Eugenie Simmons, a customer and an Airbnb host, is waiting for several thousands of dollars owed to her by customers who have paid through Western Union.

Ms Simmons said: “I am very upset, because I have money that has been backed up in the system for almost a month now and I kept being promised week after week that it would be solved.

“If they were honest with customers from the beginning then I would’ve stopped the process and used an alternative route.”

Ms Simmons said she had bills and employees to pay.

“What do I tell the people I need to pay? That I can’t pay them because my money is being held up?

“I cannot imagine that a financial institution that is regulated by the Bermuda Monetary Authority does not have back-up systems in place for situations such as this.”

Alvin Wilson is waiting to hear back from the company in Miami and will update customers once he does.