Banking

Digital Bank Chime Suffers Outage Affecting 5M Customers

Chime has outage

Online banking startup Chime has been hit with an outage that has left its 5 million customers with no access to their money.

The outage has been going on for the last 24 hours, taking down the company's website and app, as well as shutting down customers' debit cards.

“Our payment processor has been experiencing issues today, resulting in our app + website being down,” Chime said in a tweet on Thursday (Oct. 17). “We can assure you all account information remains secure, and no personal or financial data is at risk.”

San Francisco-based Chime launched in 2013, offering debit cards, savings accounts and checking accounts to consumers without any fees. The startup generates income by receiving a portion of interchange fees from debit cards. Chime has described its target market as a younger demographic whose income ranges from $35,000 to $70,000 a year, who don't want to pay the fees charged by larger brick and mortar banks, and are more likely to take their chances on a startup.

“We know our members trust us with their banking needs and our teams are working diligently to fully restore the mobile app,’’ Chime Chief Executive Officer Chris Britt told Bloomberg. “In the interim, we’ve been proactively communicating real-time updates with our members.”

The company is reportedly in the process of raising funds that would boost its valuation to $5 billion. Earlier this year, it reached a valuation of $1.5 billion after raising $200 million in a venture funding round led by DST Global, which Chime said would be used toward growing the business and launching additional lending and credit products, as well as doubling its size to more than 200 employees and expanding its leadership team.

And just last month Chime launched an overdraft initiative, called SpotMe, which is designed for customers who live paycheck to paycheck and deposit all of their earnings into their Chime accounts.

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