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TD Bank customer out $480 after e-transfer cancelled — despite having autodeposit



Christine Mason of Edmonton says she was pleased last September when someone wanted to buy the power tools she’d advertised on Kijiji — a cordless grinder, charger and two batteries.

A man who said his name was Steve said he’d head over after work and would pay $480 by e-transfer, since he didn’t carry a lot of cash.

“It sounded plausible to me,” said Mason. “He was in the trades and I thought, ‘OK, that’s fine.'”

After inspecting the tools, “Steve” opened a banking app on his phone.


Mason entered her email, watched him type in $480 and hit “send.” She then read a confirmation number, indicating the transaction was done.

She’d set up her TD Bank account with autodeposit — a feature designed to protect against the risk of fraudsters intercepting funds, because money is directly deposited into an account, with no additional steps needed, such as answering a security question.

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Autodeposit is advertised as being “fast” and “secure.” Mason added it specifically for the e-transfers she’d get selling items online, so she was confident the money would soon show up.

It never did.

A Go Public test has since found that some e-transfers can be cancelled, even when the recipient has autodeposit, depending on what financial institution the money is sent from.

A software engineer who’s worked in fintech and banking says the Interac system — used for e-transfers in Canada — “is not bulletproof.”

“It’s good for people to know that there’s risk involved,” said Mattias Eyram, who’s studied how money gets transferred from one financial institution to another.

“You’re not really protected until you’ve seen that money settle inside your account [by checking your balance].”

A grinder, two batteries and a charger lay on a wood table.
The man who bought these power tools from Mason was able to cancel the e-transfer more than an hour later. (Submitted by Christine Mason )

That’s not how e-transfers are promoted online by the big five banks — Bank of Montreal, CIBC, Royal Bank, Scotiabank and TD.

All of them call e-transfers “safe” and/or “secure,” with no mention of the possibility the sender might stop the transaction even after the transfer appears to have been completed.  

After “Steve” drove away with the tools, Mason checked the banking app on her phone, expecting the notification of deposit to show up any minute.

“I was checking constantly,” she said. “It kept me up all night.”

By morning there was still no notification, no money in her account. So she called TD.

She says she was told $480 had indeed been earmarked for her account shortly after 9 p.m., but the transaction was cancelled about 90 minutes later.

The customer service rep also said the sender’s first name was actually Riley, not Steve, but couldn’t say where he banked, for privacy reasons.

Mason says she was repeatedly put on hold and then told to go through the bank’s fraud department. “And then the conversation was cut off.”

How safe are e-transfers? We test them to find out


A woman who was selling some tools has learned that not all e-transfers are final. Despite seeing that the buyer hit send, she later discovered the transaction was cancelled, leaving her out hundreds of dollars. Go Public takes a closer look at how prevalent this problem is.

At her branch, she was told to call a toll-free customer service number and that’s when she learned something surprising.

She says, on the call, a manager told her that e-transfers — even to accounts with autodeposit — can sometimes be cancelled, even up to 24 hours later.

“I was so shocked,” said Mason. “Even when you’re on hold on the phone [with TD] it will say, ‘Consider doing autodeposit because it’s safe’ … that’s what’s so frustrating.”

She says the manager said TD wasn’t the problem — the bank has safety protocols for e-transfers. Once its customers hit “send” to an account that has autodeposit activated, they can’t cancel the transaction.

On the other hand, he said the bank has no control over safety protocols at other financial institutions and some allow customers to cancel e-transfers after they’ve been sent.

“You’re constantly being told … this [autodeposit] is the best way to go,” said Mason. “It’s just false advertising.”

Mason filed a report with the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, and says she spent countless sleepless nights, searching websites like Kijiji, Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist, to see if the scammer would post the power tools for sale.

“I don’t think people really realize how much effect it has on you. I could not let it go,” she said.

After Go Public contacted TD about Mason’s case, the bank deposited $480 into her account as a “goodwill gesture.”

E-transfer test

Go Public tested how easy it is to cancel e-transfers after they’re sent.

We first asked customers with the big five banks and a few credit unions to e-transfer $5 to an account that required a security question be answered to enable the deposit.

In all cases, senders were able to cancel the e-transfer until the recipient had answered the security question. Such transfers expire after 30 days.

Despite that, every financial institution showed a notification indicating the transaction was completed.

“There’s definitely a mismatch there, of what’s actually happening and the information being displayed,” said Eyram, the engineer and fintech expert. He says financial institutions should not tell customers a transaction has been completed until that’s actually happened.

In the second part of our test, senders e-transferred $5 to accounts that had autodeposit set up.

When the e-transfers came from one of the big banks, senders never had an option to cancel it.

Some credit unions, though, allowed senders to cancel for more than half an hour after the e-transfer was sent — even though the notification the sender received indicated it was completed.

The would-be recipient was not informed of the cancellation.

“That is very tricky and something that should not be happening,” said Eyram.

Mason now believes the man who ripped her off must have sent his e-transfer from a credit union.

“People need to know about that,” she said. “Close friends of mine, they’re shocked.”

Eyram says, generally, the Interac system is fast and efficient, but there’s an uneven playing field.

A man wearing a brown button-up shirt sits on a chair in the middle of a long hallway.
Fintech expert Mattias Eyram says financial institutions should let customers know that some e-transfers can be cancelled. (Kimberly Ivany/CBC)

E-transfers are “as safe as whatever the sender’s financial institution is and the receiver’s,” he said. “You can’t just trust your own bank, right? You have to trust the sender’s.”   

A spokesperson for Interac declined an interview request, but in an email Adrienne Vaughan wrote that the length of time for a transaction to complete is not related to the size of a financial institution, or whether it’s a bank or credit union.

“It is more related to the fraud checks happening by the sending and receiving financial institutions before the transaction is approved,” wrote Vaughan.

“Each bank or credit union makes their own decisions regarding which checks to complete, and therefore how much time might be required.”

Since customers generally have no idea that processing times can vary between financial institutions — and that some e-transfers can be outright cancelled — Eyram says he’d like to see banks and credit unions use more transparent language.

“Show a little warning next to the transaction,” he said. “‘This may take longer than expected’ and ‘Don’t trust that it’s there just yet.'”

Go Public told TD about Mason’s experience, and the fact that she felt misled by advertising that autodeposit is fast and secure.

Spokesperson Ashleigh Murphy said in a statement that the bank is looking into how it can update language around its autodeposit feature “to clarify all nuances for our customers.”

Mason says she’s still going to sell items online but from now on, people will have to pay cash — other than close friends and family, she says she’s done accepting e-transfers.

“Absolutely not,” she said. “Because they can pull it back.”

Customers with the big five banks were able to cancel an e-transfer before the recipient answered the security question in a test conducted by Go Public. (CBC)



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Roof blown off Mercedes-Benz dealership in Regent Park, police urge caution in the area – CP24



Part of the roof of the Mercedes-Benz dealership in Regent Park has blown off and landed on a nearby roadway, according to Toronto police.

The dealership is on the southwest corner of Dundas Street East and Bayview Avenue, near the Don River and Don Valley Parkway.

Police say it happened just after 11:30 a.m. and are urging drivers and pedestrians to use caution in the area and consider using alternate routes.


Dundas Street East is closed in the area in both directions, as is the southbound lane of Bayview Avenue.

Police say all Don Valley Parkway on-ramps remain open.

It’s unclear what exactly caused the dealership’s roof to become detached, however a special weather statement remains in effect for Toronto due to rain and high winds gusting at up to 80 km/h.

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Windsor-Essex brewers lament impact of looming 6.3% alcohol tax



Chapter Two Brewing Company in Windsor is celebrating a milestone this weekend.

“Five years! We’re pretty pumped that we got this far and we’re still going strong,” said brewery co-owner and general manager, Cheryl Watson. “It’s good news, I mean, we’ve gone through a lot.”

From the impact of lockdowns during the pandemic to recent inflationary pressures and wage increases, Watson notes the cost of doing business has been steep.

And that anniversary celebration will clouded by a looming alcohol excise tax increase on all alcohol producers.


“I think everything is just, it’s been unpredictable for suppliers and buyers alike,” Watson said. “We have to look at and figure out what part of it you’re going to cover and what part of it you’re going to ask your customer to cover.”

That question will get harder on April 1 when the 6.3 per cent federal excise tax goes into effect on beer, wine and spirits producers.

Taxes already make up 50 per cent of the cost of beer, 65 per cent of the cost of wine and 75 per cent spirits, according to the Canadian Taxpayers Federation.

“The screws are tightening and we don’t have as many places to play anymore,” said Watson.

The increase on the table is triple the usual jump — a number tied directly to inflation — and has alcohol manufacturers wondering who is going to pick up the tab.

“You’re going to see probably a six to 10 per cent increase on the price of your beer,” said Shane Meloche, the owner of Frank Brewing Company in Windsor. He’s weathered the storm that is the past few years in the hospitality industry and doesn’t want to raise prices but worries this time, he may have no choice.

“We’re here to make money. We’ve got 20 to 30 people that work here. We need to stay in business,” Meloche said. “We want to keep everybody employed. So the only way to do that is to pass along that price to the consumer.”

Restaurants who sell alcohol will also feel the effects. A recent Restaurants Canada survey found about half of Canadian restaurants are operating just at or below profitability levels, noting the tax increase will cost Canada’s food-service industry about $750 million a year.

“Their profit margins are very slim. And then when you have a six per cent increase, it’s slimmer,” said Paul Boots, who along with business partner John Conlon launched Suds Runner just a few months back.

It’s a licensed manufacturing representative retailer for nine different Breweries in Ontario where customers can go online and order flights of beer from them that you can’t get at the LCBO or Beer Store — and they bring it to your door.

They started the venture to support local breweries and give their less popular brews more exposure for customers who can’t make it out to craft breweries as often as they’d like.

They hope the increase doesn’t crush their suppliers, customers, or them.

“It’s important, I think, for people to understand that if the price is going up a little bit, it’s not because they’re making more money,” said Conlon.

“They’re just trying to work, trying to make it work.”


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Shares in Deutsche Bank drop as global banking worries persist – Al Jazeera English



Tumbling stocks dragged down other major banks across Europe, fuelling fears about a banking sector crisis.

Shares in Deutsche Bank have fallen sharply, dragging down other major European banks and reigniting fears about a widening banking sector crisis.

Germany’s biggest lender dropped more than 14 percent on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange in Friday morning trading before clawing back ground in the afternoon to trade 9.5 percent lower, at 8.43 euros ($9.07) a share.


Tumbling bank stocks dragged down markets across Europe on Friday with Germany’s Commerzbank down 7.5 percent, France’s Societe Generale off 5.9 percent and Austria’s Raiffaisen down 5.9 percent.

Deutsche Bank is one of 30 banks considered globally significant financial institutions, so international rules require it to hold higher levels of capital reserves because its failure could cause widespread losses.

The long-troubled bank has become the focus of investor concerns after the collapse of three regional US lenders and the Swiss government-brokered takeover of Credit Suisse by rival UBS triggered market turmoil this month.

Olaf Scholz
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz says there is ‘no reason to be concerned’ about the health of Deutsche Bank [Johanna Geron/Reuters]

The cost of insuring the bank’s debt against a risk of defaulting, known as credit default swaps, has surged as investors fret about the banking sector’s health.

Rising costs on insuring debt were a prelude to Credit Suisse‘s rescue by UBS. That hastily arranged takeover on Sunday and jitters about Credit Suisse’s long-running troubles led its shares to tank and customers to pull out their money.

Asked whether Deutsche Bank could be the next Credit Suisse, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said, “There is no reason to be concerned.”

Scholz expressed confidence in Deutsche Bank, saying it had “modernised and organised the way it works. It’s a very profitable bank.”

Speaking in Brussels after a summit of EU leaders, he also said the European banking system was “stable” with strict rules and regulations.

Deutsche Bank said on Friday that it would redeem $1.5bn in tier 2 bonds early. Such a move is normally aimed at boosting confidence in a bank although its shares plunged regardless.

The bank was hit by a string of problems linked to its attempts before the 2008 global financial crisis to compete with Wall Street investment banking giants.

But it launched a major restructuring, which involved thousands of job cuts and a greater focus on Europe, and has returned to financial health. Last year, it booked its highest annual profit since 2007.

European officials said banks in the European Union’s regulatory system, which does not include Credit Suisse, are resilient and have no direct exposure to the failed California-based Silicon Valley Bank and little to Credit Suisse.

Efforts to strengthen banking regulation in recent years “puts us all in a position to say that European banking supervision and the financial system are robust and stable and that we have resilient capitalisation of European banks”, Scholz said.

European leaders, who played down any risk of a possible banking crisis at their summit on Friday, said the financial system is in good shape because they require broad adherence to tougher requirements to keep ready cash on hand to cover deposits.

International negotiators agreed to those rules after the 2008 financial crisis, triggered by the failure of US investment bank Lehman Brothers. US regulators exempted midsized banks, including Silicon Valley Bank, from those safeguards.

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