The column for anyone fed up with bureaucracy, frustrated with delays or furious with poor service. Tell us your complaint and we'll try to fix it ... mind your business An HSBC customer, who has asked not to be named, is peeved that the bank is passing his personal financial data between departments for promotional purposes without his authorisation. 'I had a phone call the other day from an HSBC staff member, advising me that for clients making over five overseas transfers in a month there is a cash prize of $200. 'How many did I make last month?' I asked. 'Two', came the quick answer. 'It suddenly occurred to me that someone in the bank has been passing my transaction details around for promotion purposes. So I asked whether it was regular and legitimate for HSBC to divulge client details to other staff who are not directly handling these transactions, and in this case, to further their promotional ends. 'I got absolute silence as an answer. I wonder what HSBC's response would be on this, and I would also like to know whether there has been any infringement of privacy laws. HSBC says it is not illegal for bank employees to internally exchange client information. 'As a general observation, staff providing services to customers are allowed to access customer materials. As you can imagine, staff need to access information to enable them to respond to customer inquiries,' wrote Shirley Yeung, HSBC's manager of customer communication and service quality. 'As far as promoting products and services to our customers is concerned, our terms and conditions do allow for this. The Personal Data (Privacy) Ordinance covering individual customers and the duty of confidentiality under common law covering corporate clients allow companies to make use of this type of information.' But she added that customers may write to the bank to ask that their data not be used for marketing-related purposes. hygiene High-jinks Gauri Venkitaraman, of Laguna City, asks about the 'hygiene standards' that were cited when Cathay Pacific crew refused her use of the galley or pantry for washing baby bottles and insisted that she use the toilet instead. 'I was given a taste of the 'hygiene' standards on Cathay Pacific quite recently when I travelled from Toronto to Hong Kong via Vancouver,' she writes. 'Since I was travelling with my infant son, I had to get his feeding bottles rinsed in boiling hot water and quite obviously made my way to the pantry, where I was told by seven stewardesses that feeding bottles have to be washed in the toilet. The toilet! Oh yes, they chimed in, the toilet. To top it all, I was told that this was because of hygienic reasons. I, for one, never really knew that it was 'hygienic' to wash feeding bottles in the toilet.' Cathay Pacific replies: 'We are sorry to hear of her unpleasant experience on Cathay Pacific's flight. We also apologise if there was any miscommunication on board between our crew and Ms Venkitaraman.' A spokeswoman said the airline's customer relations department has received Ms Venkitaraman's complaint and would contact her directly. trouble brewing Former Delifrance fan Ron Baker was busy collecting coupon stamps last month thinking he had until the end of this month to get 10 stamps to qualify for a 15 per cent discount card. He was set for disappointment when he recently visited the branch in the basement of the Hyatt Regency, Tsim Sha Tsui. 'Having collected eight chops a month before this offer was supposed to close, I was surprised to see a poster by the till in the same branch saying: 'The Le Carte offer is fully subscribed. Thank you for your loyalty',' the Tuen Mun resident writes. 'So far, [Delifrance] has offered me one free cup of coffee in return for my disappointment and the $300 I spent so far trying to get the discount card they were dangling under my nose. People say half a loaf is better than no bread at all, but that isn't even one slice!' Delifrance says it is sorry about the oversubscription and has asked Take Action to remind Mr Baker to keep his stamps, which can be exchanged for at least two tarts in addition to a free cup of coffee. 'To show our gratitude towards Mr Baker's kind support to our Le Carte programme, we would like to offer a coffee coupon dedicated to [his] next visit to any Delifrance outlet in Hong Kong.'