Fact Check: 'Entire Banking System' In Canada Did NOT Close Down -- Outage Was Resolved

Fact Check

  • by: Lead Stories Staff
Fact Check: 'Entire Banking System' In Canada Did NOT Close Down -- Outage Was Resolved Service Fixed

Did the "entire banking system" in Canada close down? No, that's not true: Although there was a telecommunications outage in the country on July 8, 2022, that affected some banking systems, service was mostly restored by the next day. At the time of writing, Canadian banking systems were intact.

The claim appeared in a Facebook post on July 15, 2022. It was a repost of a TikTok video published on July 8, 2022. The caption of the Facebook post read in part "BANKS & DEBIT CARDS SHUT DOWN." The person in the video opened:

Well y'all, it's happening in Canada right now. Debit cards are refusing to work. Accounts are being shut down. The entire banking system in Canada -- as we speak and I'm making this video -- is closing down.

This is what the post looked like on Facebook at the time of writing:

canada banks debit FB post.png

Facebook screenshot

(Source: Facebook screenshot taken on Tue Jul 26 22:06:00 2022 UTC)

A nationwide telecommunications outage in Canada from Rogers Communications did occur on July 8, 2022, at the time the video was originally posted on TikTok. The outage resulted in a massive disruption of internet, phone, emergency and banking services -- including complications with debit cards. However, the outage was largely resolved by July 9, 2022, almost a week before the video was reposted in the Facebook post referenced in this fact check.

When the Facebook post was published on July 15, 2022, there was no announcement from the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada, which "supervises federally regulated financial entities" in the country, that banks and debit cards were shut down in Canada. In fact, the agency had announced updated protections for bank customers on June 30, 2022, just days before the Rogers outage.

Canada's "big five" banks -- Royal Bank of Canada, Bank of Montreal, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, Scotiabank and TD Bank -- had operating websites and web services at the time of writing.

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