Why ICICI Why?

An e -mail I sent to ICICI Bank within the first month of becoming their customer.
The ICICI Internet banking website is the most non-user friendly website I have ever used. It is so annoying and painful to use that I’d rather walk to the branch. My company has forced me to open a salary account with ICICI, else I would never have committed this blunder.

In the guise of providing a safe and secure Internet banking experience, you are just causing a great deal of inconvenience to customers. Some stupid and annoying features:
a. Session timeout every 2-3 minutes
b. No Copy/Paste is allowed. You cannot expect the customer to memorize the customer id, Internet banking password, and the transaction password, and be able to reproduce all of them within 2-3 minutes.
c. Twice, I tried adding my HDFC account as a beneficiary, each time a message displayed stating that I receive a URN as SMS, but it never came. Then when I sent “URM ”as SMS, I got a message stating that I wasn’t registered for this service.
d. Performing a task as simple as transferring money between our own accounts can take up to 20 minutes, three to four session timeouts, couple of incorrect grid numbers etc.
e. I can’t even change my mobile number for receiving alerts. For this, I need to visit your branch and fill out a form.
f. The grid that has been put in place as the third-level of authentication is wiped off the card after a few months. How can one recall all the numbers in the grid from memory while doing online purchases or transferring funds. Seems as if you do not want customers to carry their debit cards with them, you’d rather have customers leave them at home.
From a customer’s perspective I can only say that in my opinion, the sole purpose of your Internet banking portal is to encourage customers to go and stand in serpentine quests at your branches. You simply do not want people to do banking at their own convenience.

Wonder if you have even tried HDFC NetBanking? It is simple, user friendly, and very secure. Suggest you try using it to see how a user-friendly yet secure website is supposed to function.
As a banking institution, you are free to implement the strictest security norms, but what about ensuring that they do not inconvenience customers.
I have been using HDFC for almost 11 years, and during such time, I’ve asked for a new ATM card only thrice (once because I upgraded to a Gold Debit Card), but my wife who’s been using an ICICI debit card for little over two years has already applied for a new one. And no, she did not go swimming with her ICICI debit card which could have caused the debit card ink to be washed away.


  • April 26, 2010 - 4:51 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for your comment Iqbal. Now that you have mentioned it, I think I did try their Tele customer care service, or at elast I intended to until I shouted at the IVR and banged the phone down. Its more of “customer dare” than care.

  • April 26, 2010 - 4:50 pm | Permalink

    Hey Ankur, I think I’ve been lazy, very lazy.

  • April 21, 2010 - 2:52 pm | Permalink

    ICICI has promised to keep our money safe (even if it is to keep the money safe from ourselves itself). I am not sure if you have tried their Tele Customer support yet. Any person who has gotten his issues fixed via the customer support is a testament to patience.

  • Ankur Dhami
    March 29, 2010 - 11:30 am | Permalink

    Hi Manu,
    Same old manu is back to Business…ICICI guys beware THE BOSS IS BACK….

    Great post!!! It brings out the problems faced by common man. But I just wonder we people consider ourselves computer friendly and then face so many problems what about the people who are computer illiterate (and probably want to learn). They better stick to old ways of banking I guess….

  • Manu
    March 26, 2010 - 3:20 pm | Permalink

    Sajid, you have to use HDFC to understand what’s different. ICICI believes that if there are multiple check points in a transaction, then it is secure. Usability is as important as security.

  • March 26, 2010 - 11:30 am | Permalink

    Hi Manu,

    I have been using ICICI net banking since 2-3 years now. I never used HDFC Net Banking so cannot comment on its user friendly aspect.

    As far as I have understood from using ICICI Net Banking is that at the very beginning you may get some issues but its smooth sailing in future. If there are so many things involved: Grid, Transaction password session timeouts etc. they are for your safety.

    Anyways I believe you will sail smooth in future…


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