An investigation by The Times into Lloyds Banking Group has found contractors employed at its largest PPI complaint handling unit were taught how to “play the system” to the detriment of clients.
An undercover Times reporter went through the recruitment and training process to work as a PPI complaint handler at Royal Mint Court in London.
According to the paper, the reporter was told:
• Some bank salesmen had faked PPI information in agreements on loan sales;
• Complaint handlers should effectively turn a blind eye to the risk of fraud;
• The majority of customers would give up pursuing their complaint if the bank rejected it the first time around;
• That a job as a PPI complaint handler could be “morally difficult”.
The investigation also found:
• A document which openly concedes that Lloyds has lost some crucial customer evidence;
• Staff breached customers’ privacy under the Data Protection Act on some occasions;
• That the entire operation was based on the assumption that Lloyds’ salesmen never mis-sold PPI.
According to The Times, Lloyds said yesterday it had terminated its contract with Deloitte, the company responsible for running the complaints unit, after investigating “issues” at Royal Mint Court. Deloitte had run the operation since 2011.
Lloyds said Royal Mint Court employees were now being re-trained by a new supplier “in line with our policies and procedures”.
The bank added: “Some of the comments made by trainers to your reporter are not endorsed by Lloyds Banking Group and we believe they do not reflect our high training standards or our policies. We believe the comments to be isolated and they are now being addressed.”
Deloitte said that it could not comment on specifics because of client confidentiality, but added: “Deloitte’s role was to process PPI mis-selling complaints from Lloyds Banking Group customers who were sold policies by the bank, in accordance with policies and procedures.”