The central bank called for an investigation into why buyers are affected by defaults


RETAILERS have called on the central bank to investigate after a payment system failure caused significant disruption for customers and store staff.

An eight-hour outage by card payments company Opayo caused “widespread” problems at supermarkets, convenience stores and gas stations.

Convenience Stores and Newsagents Association (CSNA) chief executive Vincent Jennings urged the central bank to seek a report on the outage.

The problem affected the SuperValu business network, one of the largest multiples in the state.

Mr Jennings said: “One of the largest payment processors, Opayo, formerly Elavon and SagePay, experienced an eight-hour outage.

“The disruption in supermarkets, convenience and gas stations has been really extensive.”

Mr Jennings said ATMs in stores continued to work with payment cards, which didn’t work at the checkout. This meant some could withdraw cash to pay for their purchases.

Others, who don’t have debit or credit cards, tried paying at checkouts using payment systems on their phones and smartwatches.

But they couldn’t get the phones to work, and phones and watches can’t access cash from ATMs.

Retailers lost sales and credit had to be given to other customers in the hope they will pay now, Mr Jennings said.

“I have asked the central bank to reassure me that they are requesting a report and to confirm that they are aware that the Opayo system was down across the UK at the same time.”

He said it was the third outage in four weeks.

Opayo, which has around 50,000 customers in Ireland and is owned by Elavon, confirmed it “ran into an issue” that has impacted how transactions are processed.

It is a payment processing service. Most retailers in this state are enrolled in electronic payment processing.

The company said the issue is now resolved and apologized for what happened.

“We can confirm that the issue is now resolved and normal service has been restored. We continue to monitor the service closely.

“Thank you for your patience during this service disruption to your business, for which we again apologize.”

The Banking and Payments Federation Ireland (BPFI) said it was investigating whether there was a problem as a number of card machines across the country were out.

A spokesman for BPFI said “members are investigating if there is a problem and what the impact is.”

A number of people shared their frustration online tonight that their card payments were not being accepted.

“Why are all the card machines down everywhere???” wrote one user.

While another person wrote: “Is there a problem with @SuperValuIRL payments online…can’t let my order go through and came across 2 stores today that the card machines are down…Surprised it’s an outage?”

A user shared an image of a poster on display at a Supervalu store in Dublin today. The poster read: “We are only accepting cash payments today, sorry for the inconvenience caused.” The central bank called for an investigation into why buyers are affected by defaults

Fry Electronics Team

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