Absa Bank [JSE:ABSP] told Fin24 via email that it was progressively dealing with a technical problem which rendered its services to millions of customers unavailable on Thursday.
The bank announced on Thursday afternoon that its systems were down as a result of "technical challenges" which affected its ATMs and bank cards.
Absa clients took to social media networking site Twitter to complain that even some branches were offline.
The bank has close to 9 million customers in South Africa. Using its Twitter account, @AbsaSouthAfrica, the bank told customers that it could not say by when the problem would be resolved, but that a technical team was attending to it.
Absa spokesperson Phumza Macanda said via email: "We experienced a technical problem which resulted in several of our services becoming unavailable. We have resolved the main issue and we are gradually restoring services in phases. Customers can make card payments and cash withdrawals in the meanwhile."
Macanda said the issue did not affect cash withdrawals at ATMs and Point-of-Sale card payments via swiping. She said services were being restored.
Absa apologised for the inconvenience and said they are working as quickly as possible to restore full services
We are currently experiencing technical challenges with our Digital, ATM and Card channels. Our team is attending to the situation. We apologise for the inconvenience this may cause.
The last time Absa experienced these challenges was in April this year.
The bank later tweeted an update to say it had resolved issues with cards and ATMs.