Going to the ATM, many Sparkasse customers are in for a big surprise. Instead of going directly to the subject of money, they are asked for their approval beforehand. But that is not a coincidence. We explain what is behind it and what could happen if you refuse.
Anyone going to the ATM generally has two things on their mind: get fresh cash or, if you don’t bank online, find out your account balance. The Sparkasse currently offers a third option, previously unknown.
Savings Bank customers must accept the price increase at the ATM
the uses your ATMs to get customer approval for a price increase (Source: Handelsblatt via Techbook). This is usually done through a pop-up window in online banking, directly at the branch, or by letter. However, not all Sparkasse customers can be contacted this way, which is why the bank is now turning to this unusual method. Affected Sparkasse customers are now shown a corresponding window when they visit the ATM, where they can choose between three possible responses: “I agree”, “Already done” or “Skip”.
In theory, Sparkasse customers have the option to avoid the price increase and simply press “Skip”. In practice, however, most of them are likely to be so surprised and just want to withdraw their money quickly that they agree. A clever Sparkasse trick to secure price increase approval with gentle pressure. After all, the savings bank must inform its customers in advance by mail about the changed terms and conditions and price lists, alternatively as a digital notification.
It is not currently known how many savings banks use the ATM trick. However, according to the Handelsblatt, the Sparkasse in Berlin and Sparkasse Mecklenburg-Schwerin will be there.
How to protect yourself with online banking:
Will they fire you if you disagree?
And what if Sparkasse customers keep clicking “Skip” and just don’t agree? That remains the exciting question. From a purely legal point of view, financial institutions have the right to terminate their clients. However, it remains to be seen whether they actually take action against their customers. However, Postbank does not have these scruples and has already announced that it will terminate its customers if they do not agree to the price increase before May 1.