Programming error causes $150k Myki windfall

Programming error causes $150k Myki windfall

Summary: An error in Victoria's recently implemented Myki smart card system has seen two customers credited over $150,000 to their accounts.

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An error in Victoria's recently implemented Myki smart card system has seen two customers credited over $150,000 to their accounts.

Myki Card

Myki Card (Credit: Timetable TripUp Image, by MrPbps, CC2.0 )

The company operating the system, Kamco, has also admitted it has credited a further 28 accounts with incorrect amounts, and has chalked the mistakes up to a "programming error".

"The amount being credited is not 'real' money and cannot be withdrawn from the card. We are working with our software development partner ACS to fix the error," Kamco spokesperson John Fergusson said in a statement.

Until the error is fixed, however, the company will have to contact individual customers and replace their cards to reset credit amounts.

The Myki system has encountered many problems since the beginning of its roll-out, which started in Geelong then moved to Melbourne. Over 10,000 errors were reported in transactions by August 2009, and 30,000 cards were recalled in January this year.

The Kamco consortium has had its own problems, flying in experts to help get Myki working across the different transport systems and also facing legal action from ERG Group over terminated contract costs.

Despite these problems, almost 115,000 Melbournians had signed up for the Myki smart card at the start of this year.

It has been reported that commuters are using the new system as an excuse to avoid paying fares.

Topics: Government, Government AU, Software Development

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5 comments
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  • Good programmer should always write unit test for every single lines of code they've written, to cover all the scenarios.

    The system should never went out to public with that kinda software quality. I hope they've done the load testing, considering the worse scenario.
    dev_raver
  • I am one of the 115,000 people that have got a myki. I only obtained one because it was FREE rather than having to potentially pay money for the "privilege".

    I am still yet to use my myki, preferring instead to use the current system for as long as possible.

    I would assume that if problems like these keep occurring the myki system may not have a long life at all...
    calvertmg
  • I cannot believe how much of our money is being/has been spent on this waste of space! I'm also continually perplexed to understand why the Victorian Government didn't just buy the Oyster system off London - it's called reuse people.

    The beyond ridiculous amount of money that has been spent on Myki is instant dismissal of the Government in my book - if any one of us in IT ever let a project go so exuberantly over budget we'd be fired, so that's exactly what I plan to do to the Government at the next election!
    disgusted-ce525
  • Reading the responses here, it's laughable the extent to which isolated issues are hyped, showing how little people understand the value of the proposition and the dramatic improvements it brings:

    User Experience - a million times better than the old tickets. If you get one and actually use it, with the automatic top-up facility, you'll realise just how bad you had it before.

    Ticketing Upside - partly due to the improved experience and ease of use, as well as some other facets, ticketing revenues will increase dramatically as a result of the system. Making it easier to pay results in more people paying.

    Improved Usage Data - the value in understanding people's journeys and using this intelligence in scheduling etc is enormous, with the beneficiaries being the public

    Extensions - once bedded down this convenient vehicle will no doubt be used to help deliver other public services as well as pay for other small items.
    The Joester
  • You're very lucky to get a Myki even without the $150K bonus. I applied for the "free" one only to have the order process fail on the last step getting a transaction ID. I therefore wasn't sure whether my application was accepted or not. I logged a support call and was eventually told my application was indeed successful. Needless to say - I still don't have my Myki... Seems like Myki support is like the rest of the product...
    shoreha1@...