By Matt Scuffham
LONDON (Reuters) - Thousands of Britons failed to receive their wages on Friday when a problem at Europe's biggest bank HSBC prevented some of its business customers from making payments.
The glitch affected payments made by HSBC's business customers through Britain's BACS system, which processes electronic payments.
"There has been a fault in the information used to process some payments from HSBC's business customers. Approximately 275,000 payments have been affected, including payments to customers of other banks," HSBC said.
Many Britons were scheduled to receive their monthly wages on Friday, with a large number planning getaways to make the most of the final public holiday in Britain before Christmas. Those affected by the glitch took to social media to vent their frustrations.
"Plans for the weekend out of the window. Thanks HSBC!," said one.
Britain's retail banks have been hit by a number of technology failures causing inconvenience for hundreds of thousands of customers.
State-backed Royal Bank of Scotland has been the worst affected and promised to invest hundreds of millions of pounds in its computer systems after its latest glitch in June.
HSBC apologized and said it was taking immediate steps to ensure the payments were made as soon as possible. It said it would work with other banks to ensure customers do not lose out as a result of the issue.
(Reporting by Matt Scuffham; Editing by Jan Lopatka and Susan Fenton)