Another incident occurred in the European Central Bank’s (ECB) ‘s important Target2 payment system. As emerges from an ECB announcement, financial institutions using the system had difficulty accessing a module with which they received information on the movements of their TARGET2 account. This had already happened on Monday afternoon. An ECB spokesperson said on Tuesday that it was not technically possible to specify the number of users affected. “There are probably a significant number of participants.” The euro central bank had already announced on Monday that payment processing and ancillary systems had not been affected by the disruption.
In the euro area, all cross-border payments between banks are processed through the Target2 clearing system. The system is the backbone of payment transactions in the euro area and is managed by the ECB in collaboration with the national central banks of euro area countries. In 2020, an average of 345,000 payments worth € 1.8 trillion were processed on Target2 every day. According to the ECB spokesperson, the malfunction of the information and control module (ICM) of the system started around 4:15 p.m. (CEST) and was finally resolved at 8:30 p.m. Target2 closes at 6 p.m. Over the past year there have been several incidents, some of them major. On October 23, the system even failed completely for several hours. As a result, transfers did not arrive and had to be posted later.