Confusion about my identity

This nice bank lady, who’s just chatted to me for twenty odd minutes about her challenging work schedule, lovely children, all too rare holidays and the unpredictable British weather, says apologetically: “I’m afraid you have failed the identity verification and we cannot give you access to the account.”

Appearantly there’s some serious confusion about my identity. The problem is that since I opened my UK bank account 14 years ago, I have not actively used it for the past nine, because I lived in Finland. On top of that, I took my husband’s name last year. The name on bank file is my old one. “Oh, congratulations on your marriage“, the nice bank lady says. I open my mouth to correct her that we’ve actually been married for almost 15 years, but zip it up. Let’s not confuse her even more. Hope she doesn’t ask for a marriage certificate.

The nice bank lady: “Could I have your bank card?”
Me: “I’m afraid I don’t have a valid one anymore.”
The nice bank lady: “Could I see some photo identification in your previous name?
Me: “I’m afraid as I acquired a new passport, driver’s licence and ID card, I had to hand back the old ones.”

The official excerpt from the Finnish population system confirming my name change and my new IDs, displaying the same ID number, are not sufficient for her and the bank. I nod my head understandingly. The process should be respected. It’s in place to safeguard the account holder’s privacy. We proceed with the the identity verification questions:

What’s the overdraft ability on your account?”
“Sorry, what’s that?”
What’s your telephone number?”
“My mobile or work number 14 years ago or one of my Finnish numbers?”
What’s your mother’s maiden name?”
“Thanks, finally an easy one!”
What is your property status?”
“Oh, rental or owned. Do you mean when I first got the account 14 years ago, by the time we left UK or in Finland?”

I have never excelled in multiple choice or questions that are supposed to have just one correct answer. I believe there’s always room for interpretation, gray areas to be discussed, angles to be taken into consideration. That’s why I like Bikram Yoga. It is accessible for all, but it allows for diversity and challenges for individuals on different phases on their yoga journeys. As my teacher on my 25th consecutive yoga day so beautifully articulated it: “You can go for the full expression of the posture or a basic set-up. The benefits are the same.”



2 thoughts on “Confusion about my identity

    • You’ll be fine, TC, as long as you have a bank card and haven’t changed your name. It worked out for me in the end, too. They had my old signature on file and fortunately, I still remembered how I used to sign my name.

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