When State Department employee Fabian Olaya logged onto his Navy Federal Credit Union account on Thursday morning he was shocked to find his entire account had been emptied.
"It was all gone," he told CNN in an interview. "Literally, your whole life savings, and it just vanishes. You're going to freak out."
Olaya wasn't alone.
Other members of the credit union reported their frustration via social media after the credit union posted on Facebook that deposits were being delayed, just five days before Christmas.
"IT'S NOT A DELAY!," Jessica Jenkins posted in a comment on Facebook. "Payday is Wednesday. The check was deposited on Wednesday. Then Wednesday night it disappeared and made the account hundreds of dollars overdrawn! Today is pretty much the last day to order online and have things get here before Christmas! So if this doesn't get fixed soon you have probably ruined Christmas for a lot of families!!! This is absolutely ridiculous!!!"
The credit union said service was restored by Thursday afternoon, but not before members experienced anxiety and long delays reaching customer service.
Olaya said he had tried contacting the credit union immediately and was given a wait time of 45 minutes but then the call abruptly got disconnected.
"You have no choice but to wait, and then five minutes later the line clicks," Olaya said, who has been a member for more than 20 years.
It's unclear how many of the 8.1 million members were affected by the episode.
"Some of our members began experiencing a delay in posting deposits," a spokesman for the Vienna, Va.-based credit union said in a statement. "At this time, all deposits are back to normal. Members with account specific questions can visit a branch, call our contact center or use online and mobile banking."