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Bank Freezes Online Payment Over Dog's 'Terrorist-Sounding' Name

The Huffington Post The Huffington Post 28/03/2016 Lee Moran

A San Francisco man's online payment was blocked by his bank earlier this month because his dog's name sounded like a terrorist network.

Bruce Francis, who has multiple sclerosis, was transferring money from his Chase Bank account to his dogwalker and he put the 9-year-old pitbull's moniker "Dash" in the memo line. 

Bank officials thought Dash sounded a little bit too much like Daesh, the Arabic term for the self-described Islamic State, and canceled the payment.

Chase also flagged the payment with the U.S. Treasury Department, which placed a note on Francis' account asking him to "explain what Dash means." Once Francis explained to officials at the department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) that Dash was his dog's name, his payment was processed.

Despite the inconvenient mix-up, Francis said he had no hard feelings.

"I think anything we can do to stop the terrorists and the funding of terrorists, let's do it," he told KTVU. "And if it means an inconvenience to me and my dogwalker, then that's a price I’m totally willing to pay."

In a statement, a Chase Bank spokesperson said the pooch's name obligated staff to review the payment under OFAC rules. 

"This is an important part of ensuring that crime does not filter through the U.S. banking system. In this instance, the payment was flagged, reviewed and eventually released."

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