the MONESE scam

This is a quick article dedicated to fellow victims of the UK startup « challenger bank » MONESE. This article is written in my non-native langage english, might not be perfect, but i hope it will help you get your money back as soon as possible.

0. Your account has been frozen / locked without notice

One day you suddenly realize that you cannot access to your Monese balance anymore. Your card does not work at the ATM, your card does not work while shopping or online. Worse, you cannot make payments anymore from the App.

You might have a message saying that « for security reasons » your account was locked. But your might also have no information at all on the given situation.

1. Contact « support » /

This is probably the first step you’ve done so far. Contacting SUPPORT from the App, or externaly via an email to

There are 2 problems when communicating with the Monese Support Team :

  • Monese SUPPORT is terribly slow (due to lack of resources, see current open positions in Estonia on the Carrer page of MONESE)
  • Monese SUPPORT doesn’t have a clue whats going on with your account. They are only « human bots » (as Elon Musk would refer to semi-skilled employment) copy-pasting pre-redacted messages.

So basically, there is nothing you can expect from this Monese SUPPORT team. Just email them to keep track of your day 0, and proceed to the next steps.

typical useless answer from Monese Support…

2. Understanding the stakeholders

If you are located in the UK, you might think that Monese is a bank regulated by the FCA (the Financial Conduct Authority)… This is absolutely wrong. Monese is not a bank and your deposit is not protected by the FSCS (the Financial Services Compensation Scheme).

If your are located in Europe, you also might think that Monese is a bank regulated by your local state bank ? Also very wrong. You can see below that Monese limited -the original UK startup- has established a nutshell company called Monese EU to operate on EU soil. Funny thing is, this EU branch of Monese is only capitalized at 61 500€… not much compared to the 208 m£ of Monese limited.

So who’s regulated ? PrePay Technologies (aka PPS, a branch of the Edenred group). As mentioned in the fine prints, Monese is only « a registered agent » of PPS. Which means Monese is paying PPS to emit the cards, do the compliance, and much more. Monese is only a marketing firm which has no proprietary technologies. What Monese does best is getting financed by some private equity rounds, and distribute money to influencers to gather new customers. This is the old Tupperware / Herbalife marketing technique where new sellers are sponsored by senior sellers (see Multi Level Marketing). This explains many messages on social media promoting Monese with a 30£ initial incentive : the sponsor providing the promotional link will also get a cut on your future expenses.

So one can see that Monese is not directly regulated : PPS is. That explains why the Support Team of Monese has absolutely no clue whats going on with your account : the Compliance Team is working in another company.

Monese EU « offices » (just a mailbox in fact)
Monese EU extract : only 61 500€ of capital

3. Escalate to the Ombudsman

What is the Ombudsman ? Actually the FCA and the NBB do not communicate with the retail consumer, they are only B2B institutions. Thats why an office called the Ombudsman was created to gather complaints from users / customers of entities which are subject to a licence granted by the FCA or the NBB.

Visit the Monese Terms and Conditions page to know how to post a complaint, depending on your location.

If you are a UK victim, visit

If you are a EU victim, visit Know that you can also contact other institutions dedicated to consumer protection. You can also activate your insurances if you have some legal assistance provided.

4. Get confirmation from the Ombudsman

This step is very important ! If you dont have a confirmation from the Ombudsman, Monese will never process your complaint. Thats the way it is ! You have to get leverage to get your money back from Monese.

This is what your local Ombudsfin confirmation letter should look like :

5. Forward to

You now have to forward the Ombudsman letter to, saying that you are now officially considered as a victim from Monese and your are looking for justice.

Dont say « please », Monese owes you that money. Keep in mind that, from a technical point of view, you are now lending money to Monese at a 0% rate, which is an very special rate in this inflation times !

Note that the Complaint Monese team can try to avoid your complaint to be treated as such. This was my case : in the email below Complaints tells me « if you wish to post an official complaint, please mention the reasons for that and we will do it« … This type of behavior is especially infuriating.

Nous vous remercions d’avoir contacté notre service des plaintes et vous prions d’accepter nos sincères excuses pour le retard de la réponse.
Votre compte Monese est temporairement bloqué par notre partenaire de traitement des paiements. Nous enquêtons actuellement pour trouver la raison du blocage et faire rouvrir votre compte dès que possible.
Nous sommes désolés de la gêne occasionnée et nous vous demandons de faire preuve de patience pendant que nous essayons de résoudre ce problème.
Pour en savoir plus sur les raisons pour lesquelles nous bloquons des comptes, consultez notre blog.
Si quelque chose ne vous semble toujours pas normal, faites-le moi savoir et je réexaminerai la situation.
Si vous souhaitez néanmoins déposer une plainte officielle, veuillez en indiquer les raisons dans une réponse à ce fil de discussion et nous procéderons au dépôt d’une plainte officielle. 

If further assistance is required we will be happy to assist you through our support centre.

Best regards, Monese Disputes & Complaints Team

email from Monese dated November 11th

6. Get confirmation from Monese

After a couple of days, you should finally receive an answer from Monese. It should look like this :

7. Wait and be vocal on social media

Well, from a legal point of view, there is nothing more to do but wait at that point. You have leverage over Monese as you contacted the Ombudsman, and Monese has a legal period to provide an answer to its victim. This can be 30 days or more depending on your local juridiction.

But you can still share your negative experiences on social media.

You can for instance visit TrustPilot and read the bloodbath currently taking place with Monese. There are dozen of reviews per week saying things like :

  • « This is my second review of Monese as I am now on day 14 now of being blocked out of my Monese bank app. Despite them replying to my previous review saying I would get the help I needed they are yet to reply to any of my emails. I am behind on rent and other bills. »
  • « I really don’t know what to do anymore. This bank have blocked my account with £2400 in it that I have to buy food for my three little children and wife . Support online won’t help and support via phone or chat , It’s nearly 1 week now. I don’t know if I’m going to have enough money to pay my bills this I am already struggling to buy food unbelievable I am using this bank more than 3 years but now I am fed up with them. »
  • « Money was sent a week ago. still not got it. Customer support – dead. out of 10 emails, i got auto answer 3 times. i sent them all they asked but still no response. If calling, nobody answers and nobody calls back, but they advertise themselves as using newest technology with customer support and it is just a pure lie. Called in all the countries possible, still same issue – no answer. Do not become their customers! there are better providers like Revolut(immediately response from support), and wise. »
  • « Refusing to refund my money. This bank has the worst customer experience I have ever gotten, how can a bank be keeping my funds for over four months and refuse to reply my emails when they reply they use three weeks to reply dozens of email I have sent previously by claiming I should provide a new alternate account that they sent the money and it was reversed meanwhile after contacting my alternate bank they say they never reversed any money which means I’m being lied to over £600 pounds being held over four months. Even after calling their customer number for hours no agent picks the call like what kinds of customer treatments are you offering it is frustrating to be treated this way over my own money »
  • « Just know that, they will block account for weeks, freeze your balance and use the monies for investments with profits. »
  • « Its no less than a ponzi scheme. Your money is not safe nor guaranteed. My family will not enjoy this christmas because of Monese. »
  • « I really don’t know what to do anymore. This bank have blocked my account with £1400 in it that I was using for Christmas. Support online won’t help and support via email tell me a email has been sent to me , but I’ve never received. It’s nearly 2 weeks now. I don’t know if I’m going to have enough money to pay my bills this month. »

You can also use / create a Twitter account to post on the Monese page or the Monese Support page. In our case Monese did block us on Twitter… This is how it works in the startup world of so-called ‘fintechs » ! Image a high-street bank blocking its customers, banning them to even step into an agency ? Impossible.

Monese dont hesitate to block its own customers !

8. Get refund / unlocked

Well this is the final part of this weeks long process ! You can finally have hands on your money. If you are still considered a customer, it can be an unlocking of your account. If Monese closed your account « for security reason », it might be a payment on an external account.

Hooray ! You can now destroy your card and send your special message to Norris KOPPEL, CEO of Monese limited 🙂

9. Answer from Monese Complaints

Curiously, i received and answer from the Complaints team of Monese.

  • Monese denies my complaint regarding the blocking of my account, relying on internal conditions which do not comply with French CMF (Code Monétaire et Financier) – as it is illegal in France to freeze an account without notice
  • Monese offers a ridiculous 17.85€ of compensation through their Classic offer !

Vincent (Monese)

20 Dec 2022, 10:24 GMT

Greetings, XXX,
In relation to your complaint lodged with Monese under reference M28692188001, I would like to inform you that this complaint has now been partially upheld and closed.
Your Complaint
You contacted our team to file a complaint about the following:

  • The block on your Monese account, with no access to the remaining funds.
  • Delay in providing a resolution and inconvenience caused by the occurrence.

Our Findings

  • On the 7th of November 2022, your Monese account was blocked by our Payment Processing Partners. On that same day, you reached out to our Support team regarding the block on your card. Regrettably, no relevant information was provided in response.
  • From the 8th of November to 5th of December 2022, you made numerous contacts with the Support team regarding the block on your account. In reply to your contacts, our Support team pleaded for your patience and informed you that the account was being reviewed by our Compliance team.
  • On the 6th of December 2022, your account was reactivated and an email was sent to you in confirmation.

Our Decision

  • I have rejected the part of the complaint in regards to the block on your Monese account, with no access to the remaining funds. Your account was suspended in accordance with Section 2.42 of our Terms and Conditions Agreement, as outlined here.
  • I have upheld the part of the complaint in relation to the delay in providing a resolution and the inconvenience caused by the occurrence. As a regulated financial institution, we are required to carry out several checks to be in line with our regulatory obligations. These investigations have to be very thorough and thus could be time-consuming. However, I believe that the Support team should have been more responsive and provided information regarding the account block during the occurrence. I apologize for the lack of updates and long wait times. Normally, we do our best to promptly serve our customers with the highest quality and it is never our intention to leave questions unanswered or issues unresolved. Due to this, I have decided to offer you three (3) months of Classic plan (free of charge – complimentary) for your personal Monese account, together with our most sincere apologies for the negative impact that I imagine this whole incident must have had on you.


  • Therefore, in total, I have decided to offer you three (3) months of Classic plan with Monese, together with our wholehearted apologies, to close this complaint. I sincerely hope you find this offer satisfactory, but if not then do let me know why. 

Monese can confirm that when the complaint was raised the necessary actions were triggered to investigate the matters logged in the complaint accordingly.
Please note that under the terms of our Complaints Procedure, this is our final response. If you are dissatisfied with it you have the right to refer your complaint to the Ombudsfin, free of charge – but you must do so within one year of the date of this letter. If you do not refer your complaint in time, the Ombudsfin will not have our permission to consider your complaint and so will only be able to do so in very limited circumstances. For example, if the Ombudsfin believes that the delay was as a result of exceptional circumstances.
The address of the Ombudsfin is:
North Gate II, Boulevard du Roi Albert II, no 8, bte. 2, 1000, Bruxelles
Details of the service offered by the Financial Ombudsman Service are available at
Once again my apologies for the trouble you have experienced.

If further assistance is required we will be happy to assist you through our support centre.

Best regards, Monese Disputes & Complaints Team

email received Tuesday 20th december.

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