Do banks discriminate against customers with 'kosher' phones?

Banks require customers to enter codes received via text message, haredi MK gets mad, calls it 'discrimination.'

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Michal Levi,

MK Uri Maklev
MK Uri Maklev
Flash 90

Several Israeli banks have "upgraded" their systems, and in order to use the bank's telephone service, customers must now enter a password sent to their cellular phones.

According to haredi MK Uri Maklev (UTJ), such security upgrades discriminate against those who have "kosher" phones which do not receive text messages and cannot access the internet.

Maklev turned to Bank Regulator Dr. Hedva Bar, requesting she allow owners of "kosher" phones to perform bank actions via their bank's telephone service, without receiving a code via SMS.

In his letter, Maklev wrote, "I am hereby bringing your attention to the fact that several banks have recently begun allowing customers to perform bank actions, including bank transfers, via the telephone only after they receive an SMS to their cell phone. The actions can only be performed after the customer enters the code received via text message."

"This policy discriminates against a large sector of society, who are no longer able to perform actions via their bank's telephone service. These customers, who have kosher phones, do not have an option to receive text messages.

"In order to prevent this discrimination and allow all customers to perform bank actions via their bank's telephone service, I request you instruct the banks to revert to their previous policies of allowing customers to perform bank actions via telephone without receiving a text message.

"I understand that the new policy is a result of wanting to ensure better security for their customers. I am sure that with some good will and a bit more thinking, they will find a way to ensure customers' accounts are secure by sending an identification code or other means of secure identification."








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