Monzo – The Key Points
- Monzo deposits are covered up to £85,000 per customer under the UK’s Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).
- Monzo are a fully licensed UK bank, who are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
- As a digital bank, Monzo do not have branches or extensive telephone support, so issues may be harder to solve, especially for older users.
- Monzo are still a startup funded by investment, and have made significant losses over the last few years.
What Is Monzo?
Monzo are a digital challenger bank offering UK customers a full service bank account they can run via an app on their mobile phone. They launched in 2017 and as of 2021 they have over 5 million customers with accounts on their platform.
Is Monzo Safe – The Details
Monzo are a fully licensed UK bank, having first got their banking license in 2017. As such, they have the same level of regulation as any other UK bank, including the long-standing large banks such as HSBC, Lloyds, Barclays etc. This includes being overseen by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
As a licensed UK bank, customer deposits with Monzo are covered up to £85,000 per customer (or £170,000 for a joint account) in case of the business failing, under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).
Monzo do not offer any investment products where your money is at risk.
Monzo made losses of over £100 million in both 2020 and 2021. They insist that they are on a path to profitability by 2022, but it is worth keeping an eye on, as the digital banking space is competitive and there are no guarantees that all banks will be able to sustain themselves in a crowded market. As Monzo are covered by the FSCS, the customer deposits are safe, but bear in mind that it would be a pain to change banks if Monzo were to no longer operate.
Security & Personal Data:
Monzo do not access any other accounts you may have – only your Monzo account, so you have nothing to worry about in regard to your data.
As Monzo is a smartphone focused app, they can use many different methods to prove your identify and keep your account sage, such as Face ID, fingerprint ID and sending SMS codes to the mobile you use the app on.
As a digital bank, Monzo do not have branches. Therefore if you do have an issue with your account, you need to rely on their remote customer services to resolve this. In various forums such as Reddit and Trustpilot, some users have complained that their Monzo accounts were frozen after an event within their account was seen as suspicious. These users then had to wait until customer services resolved the issue before they could access their account. With a traditional bank with branches or a call centre, then this could be resolved either in person or by calling the bank. With Monzo this is not possible. This could also mean that Monzo is less appropriate for older users who are not so comfortable with online and app based banking.
Check the below links for places you can find reviews, discussion and a more in-depth look at Monzo:
Is Monzo Legit?
Overall, Monzo have all of the safeguards in place you would expect from a UK bank, and as such, they are generally a safe place to put your money. However, the company itself has made significant losses over the last few years. This is not necessarily an issue as they continue to be well funded. In addition, if Monzo were to fail as a company, customer deposits are protected under the FSCS. However, it is worth being in mind that the UK’s digital banking market is very crowded, so it is not guaranteed that all the players within the market will stay around forever, and whilst you may not lose money, it would be a pain to have to change your bank.