Central Bank’s server glitch disrupting financial services cannot be seen lightly23 April 2021 Editorial Desk
THE operation of the central bank's Bangladesh Automated Clearing House (BACH) for clearing cheques and settling transactions through electronic fund transfer (EFT) were inoperative since April 13 due to a technical glitch in the optical fibre cable between the data centre at the central bank's Motijheel office and its data centre at Mirpur, putting its clients in severe trouble.
According to a news report published in this daily on Thursday, the Bangladesh Bank's clients, on an average, settle Tk 13,000 crore through inter-bank cheques and EFT every day. Cheque clearing and EFT, are operated by the BACH, under which the major amount of inter-bank financial transactions are settled in contrast to the volume dealt with by other digital financial tools. BB's executive director and spokesperson Md Serajul Islam said they have restored inter-bank cheque clearing system on April 18 (Sunday) and inter-bank EFT system on March 20 (Tuesday).
However, economists and technology experts have said that such kind of technical glitch in the country's central bank is unacceptable. Actually, the weaknesses of the central bank were exposed after its reserve heist in 2016. The criticism of the central bank's digital server management started since that incident. The BB spokesperson said IT infrastructure could get disrupted any time for any reason. 'We tried our best to solve the problems'. This has had a huge impact on the country's financial sector as businesses and clients do no longer carry large amounts of cash, bankers said.
Meanwhile, technologist Tousif Ahmed Sumon said, it took a few days to solve the problem due to inefficient design and weak connectivity of the BB server. They didn't really pay much attention when designing it. Since a lack of skilled manpower is one of the main reasons for the disruption and the banks' failure to keep the system in place, relevant government agencies should help create skilled manpower in the Bangladesh Bank through their IT security units. The nation finds with deep anxiety incompetence and inefficiency everywhere. But the government continues with the power of corruption undisturbed and uncared for.