MONZO is an online only bank, so when it runs into problems users are unable to access key services.

The bank crashed today leaving customers locked out of their accounts just days before Christmas.

According to website Downdetector, problems started around 4pm this afternoon, with more than 1,300 complaints quickly logged by users.

Around 65% of reports were related to the mobile bank app and 25% are about online banking problems.

Users said their online shopping purchases were being declined this afternoon.

How can I check if Monzo is down?

Monzo has confirmed that it is facing a technical issue this afternoon.

It said it is trying to fix the problem as soon as possible.

Monzo tweeted: "We're so sorry about this! We're aware of an issue affecting the Monzo app – rest assured we're looking into it and trying to get things back up and running as we speak. Thanks for your patience."

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Keep checking the firm's website for updates on when the problem is resolved.

Can I get compensation?

Banks do not have a fixed compensation scheme for service disruption but you may be entitled to some money back.

It usually depends on how much the outage has affected you – for example if it's left you out of pocket or damaged your credit rating.

Monzo hasn't commented on whether customers will be eligible for compensation as the technical hitch only happened around an hour ago.

More information will likely be revealed later, depending on how long the outage lasts.

Meanwhile, you should collect evidence of your problems so you can make a formal complaint to Monzo directly.

If you can, make a note of when you were unable to access the app, plus any costs you incurred as a result.

If your credit rating has been affected by a service outage, because you got a late payment fee after being unable to make a transaction, for example, you should also record this.

If you spoke to anyone to try and resolve the problem, make a note of their name and when you spoke to them, as well as roughly what you discussed and what they advised you to do.

What happens if Monzo refuses to compensate me?

If you’re unhappy with how the bank dealt with your problem, you can contact the free Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS).

It is an independent body which will look at the evidence you present, and make a fair decision about the action a bank should take.

The FOS can usually get involved 15 days after you’ve raised concerns with the bank.

In the case of an IT system outage at a bank, the FOS says any compensation depends on your circumstances and whether you lost out as a result

If it thinks you did, then it has the power to tell the bank to reimburse any fees, charges or fines you were hit with, for example if you were unable to make a payment for a credit card bill or to your mortgage provider.

It could also tell a bank to pay you for any money you didn't receive, such as interest, if you weren't able to pay money in.

If your credit score was affected, it may tell the bank to correct your credit file.

The FOS might also tell the bank to reimburse you for any extra costs you had to make, such as phone calls or trips to your local branch, as well as a payment for any inconvenience it caused.

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