16Mar

Scott Robert Newsletter

  1. The ICO fines a Manchester-based firm £80,000 for sending nuisance marketing messages during the pandemic:
    The Information Commissioners Office (“ICO”) has fined a Manchester-based debt support firm. The firm was found to have sent over 85,000 text messages in a two-month period during the height of the COVID19 pandemic. The firm did not have permission to send these messages and were subsequently in breach of the Privacy of Electronic Communication Regulations 2003. The ICO additionally emphasised their commitment to ensuring that businesses cannot exploit the pandemic, stating: “Businesses that think they can exploit the pandemic in this way should think again. We can fine you and take action to recover that fine where necessary”. For more information, please click ico-fines-firms-for-sending-more-than-27-million-spam-text-messages-during-the-pandemic/

 

  1. The FCA launches its consultation paper on how they intend to regulate pre-paid funeral plans:
    In January, the Treasury laid legislation before Parliament which brings the sale and administration of funeral plans within the FCA’s jurisdiction. This followed concerns raised by consumer groups. The FCA’s consultation intends to ensure that:
  • Products meet the needs of customers.
  • Plans are sold fairly, including by placing a ban on cold calling.
  • The costs of the plans are priced fairly; and
  • Customers have access to the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (“FSCS”) and Financial Ombudsman Service (“FOS”).

 

The FCA expects firms to review their business models to establish whether they need FCA authorisation. in light of these proposed changes. Without authorisation, firms may breach the provisions of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000. For more information, please click fca-regulating-funeral-plans Are you a pre-paid funeral plan firm that will be required to gain authorisation? Do you need help? Contract Scott Robert to discuss possible solutions.

 

  1. “Age-appropriate design for Children”. Six-month deadline to apply the ICO’s Code of Practice to your firm:
    The ICO issued the code on 12 August 2020 and it came into force on 2 September 2020 with a 12-month transition period, meaning that it is enforceable from the 2nd September 2021. The Code of Practice intends to protect the privacy rights of children in line with the UN Convention on Rights of a Child. The code sets out 15 standards of age-appropriate design reflecting a risk-based approach, including the new need to make privacy notices understandable to children, including ages 0-5. Firms must ensure that if their online services can be accessed by children (anybody under the age of 18), they must safeguard the children’s rights by implementing the Code of Practice, failure to do so may amount to a breach of the UK General Data Protection Regulations. For more information, please click ICO-urges-businesses-to-act-now-as-children-s-code-comes-into-force-in-six-months/
  2. Settlement Agreements may amount to a credit agreement, a fresh understanding of the term “credit”:
    The recent Supreme Court case of CFL Finance Ltd v Laser Trust and Moises Gertner has added to the debate on when an agreement would amount to a “credit agreement” and require the adherence to the Consumer Credit Act 1974. Although this has been a considerable debate for many years, Lord Justice Newey has added the following to the argument: – It seems to me that there must come a point at which the existence of a debt is sufficiently clear that an agreement providing for future payment will confer “credit” within the meaning of the CCA regardless of whether the debtor has denied that anything is due.This makes clear that on most occasions it should be clear whether credit has been extended to an individual in accordance with an agreement. Firms must begin to consider whether their settlement agreements amount to credit agreements which must adhere to the rules of the Consumer Credit Act and may consequently need FCA authorisation. For more information, please click judiciary-Judgment.pdf
  3. Scott Robert Welcomes John Drabble to the team.
    We are delighted to announce that John Drabble has joined Scott Robert to boost our regulatory consulting capability and in particular to bring additional experience in the investment and PSD2 compliance space.

John has over 23 years’ experience in financial services compliance, having previously worked for KPMG, Grant Thornton, ACA Compliance and as Compliance Policy Director for Legal & General and Head of Retail Compliance for Investec Bank. He has supported clients across the financial services sector in everything from obtaining authorisation, establishing, implementing and maintaining effective compliance arrangements, adapting to regulatory change, addressing remediation projects and managing regulatory investigations and enforcement actions. He has considerable experience in helping small and medium size firms to implement effective, efficient, proportionate and risk-based compliance arrangements. To arrange a call with John to discuss compliance within your business please contact Scott Robert on enquiries@scottrobert.co.uk or call us on 0161 914 5727.

Please visit our website to see how we can support you or contact us today on 0161 914 5727 or email enquires@scottrobert.co.uk