Friday, September 11, 2009

bnz bank robbers

bnz has announced it is installing spray units at its doors to douse fleeing robbers in a "synthetic DNA solution" that glows blue under ultraviolet light. The press release continues: "SelectaDNA spray, designed in Britain, stays on clothes for up to six months and on skin for one to two weeks and is invisible under natural light. Police have been given UV torches to shine on robbery suspects. A pinhead-sized spot of solution is enough to implicate a person. bnz branches in Counties-Manukau and Quay Park, central Auckland, are using the solution, and the bank plans to introduce it nationwide within months. Each branch of the bank will be given a "DNA strand" unique to it."

Golly gee. A few years ago the National Bank, then owned by Lloyds plc in the UK, installed security doors at its branches which have to be opened manually to admit everyone who wants to enter, and then close behind when the person is inside. The Australian owned banks, including bnz, however, decided that the cost of doing this was well above what they lose in robberies and didn't bother. The biggest bank robbers are in any event the banks themselves. It seems that every month a committee of their executives meets to think of new ways to fleece more fees out of customers. Even if, like us, you maintain bank accounts in credit you will still find yourself slugged for such things as "clearance fee", "manual transaction fee" "automated transaction fee" "monthly account fee", etc. If you dare overdraw your account for even one day, watch out - you'll get whacked for an overdrawn account fee, and a debit interest rate that even the "cash in a flash" type sharks would be proud of. Then, of course, they think of Fay Richwhite type strategies to rob the people through not paying hundred of millions of dollars of tax.

So what's behind this binz idea, which even Luddite types must find harking of the Keystone Cops? Most likely binz wants customers foolish enough to use them to think that they are safe inside a branch (which most of the time, as long as they don't obstruct the robbers, they are anyway). A very cheap and futile attempt.

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