An Post to restore card facility as Wirecard UK resumes services
Some 50,000 customer had faced disruption as payments frozen amid scandal
Although around 50,000 of the cards have been issued over three years, they are generally used as a one-off.
More than 50,000 users of An Post Money’s Currency Card will regain access to funds after Britain’s financial watchdog lifted a ban on the payment activities of Wirecard’s UK subsidiary.
The card is an An Post-branded prepaid Mastercard issued by Wirecard Card Solutions that allows customers to hold up to 16 different currencies.
An Post froze the pre-paid cards after the British Financial Conduct Authority, which regulates Wirecard Card Solutions Limited, last Friday ordered it to cease operating such cards due to “ongoing events in Germany concerning companies closely linked to Wirecard”.
That action came as the German fintech company was assessing whether certain subsidiaries of the business would have to file insolvency applications after a €1.9 billion hole was discovered in its accounts.
Late on Monday, the Financial Conduct Authority said the UK subsidiary could resume payment activities from midnight. A spokeswoman for An Post welcomed the FCA decision and said Mastercard was working to restore the currency card service for customers. That was expected to happen at some point late on Tuesday, once testing has been completed.
“We apologise again for the disruption to customers and are thankful for their patience,” she said.
An Post had a contingency plan in place for those already abroad who needed to access their money, but although there had been some enquiries, An Post said no-one needed to access the fund.
Although around 50,000 of the cards have been issued over three years, they are generally used as a one-off, industry sources said, and are rarely topped up with more funds for regular use.
With the current travel restrictions in place, use of the cards would be less prevalent at the current time.
An Post was unable to given any ide aof how much money customers might have had locked on the cards.