I tried to find out when the first digital transaction using computers happened, but could not find a specific date. By digital transaction I mean a money transfer between two banks (I assume it was between banks at the beginning) involving an electronic mean, not banknotes, coins, notes of hand or similar.

According to Wikipedia, the very first electronic (wire) transfer was done using the telegraph in 1872 (or shortly before):

The first widely used service for wire transfers was launched by Western Union in 1872 on its existing telegraph network.

However, I cannot find any information about using a computer for a similar purpose.

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    ATM's were being rolled out in Calgary by Bank of Montreal, on a trial basis, by Fall 1978. Mar 29, 2020 at 21:06
  • @PieterGeerkens They go back at least a decade before that.
    – Meir
    Mar 30, 2020 at 16:54
  • @Meir: That may be, but in Canada: (1) Bank of Montreal was the first bank to distribute the machines; and (2) Calgary in summer 1978 was the trial Canadian roll-out - height of the oil boom and all that. They were of course ubiquitous, for all banks and trust companies, by about 18 months later. Mar 30, 2020 at 17:05
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    about remote money transfer between banks, the basic techs are: a) reliable networks and b) the algorithmic concept of "atomic transactions" - the transaction can only be fully done or fully undone, never breaking half-finished. So, if the transaction is interrupted (e.g., power failure or broken cables) there is no way the money will disappear into the air, or that it will be deposited twice. and c) a system to use a) to perform b) consistently en masse. wiki en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transaction_processing_system#History states that the first system appeared in 1970.
    – Luiz
    Mar 30, 2020 at 20:19

1 Answer 1


It appears that the first electric fund transfers using a computer occurred in 1966.

Third-generation or integrated-circuit-based computers were associated with electronic commerce technologies such as automatic teller machines, electronic funds transfer, stock market automation, facsimiles, email, point of sale systems, electronic bulletin boards and electronic data interchange. In 1965, automated teller machines were created [23], which were electronic machines or computers that automatically dispense money or cash [22]. In 1966, electronic funds transfer or EFT was created [24], which was ‘a set of processes that substitutes electronic messages for checks and other tangible payment mechanisms’

For further reading on its usage.

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