October 03, 2011, 2:08 PM — Bank of America is denying its online properties were hacked over the weekend, following brownouts over the weekend during which some customers complained they couldn't reach their accounts online.
The problems continued this morning, as some BofA sites continued to display error messages.
Though most of the problems cropped up Saturday and Sunday on the secure customer sites, at noon today eastern time the main BankofAmerica.com site displayed an error code in response to queries from the Northeast, but the Web site DownorNot.com reported it was responding normally to queries from routers in Italy, Australia and Germany.
A spokesperson for BofA told the Associated Press Saturday that the problems are "not the result of hacking." Access problems were sporadic for customers in different areas of the country, for different services, but had nothing to do with attacks from outside, the spokesperson said.
On Friday Bank of America announced plans to begin charging $5 per month for any customers making purchases using a BofA debut card, which makes outages the following day look much more mysterious according to Julie McNelley, an online fraud analyst at Aite Group LLC quoted by BankInfoSecurity.com.
In November of last year Bank of America was one of half a dozen companies hit with a series of problems that took many of their ATM and online banking networks offline. BofA, Chase, American Express, Wells Fargo, U.S. Bank, Fairwinds Credit Union, PNC and others were all hit.
The banks denied they'd been hacked or hit simultaneously by an attack borne by malware; most said it was a time-change problem related to daylight savings time changes across time zones.
It could also have been infrastructure or almost any other IT related issue, a BankInfoSecurity story said at the time.
BofA home page, mid-day Eastern time today