FSA’s New Call Recording Regulations for UK Companies

UK financial institutions will soon have to record and store telephone conversations and electronic communications relating to client orders under new regulations to be introduced by the Financial Services Authority (FSA). From March 2009 firms will have to record all telephone conversations and electronic communications involving client orders for the equity, bond and derivatives markets and retain the files for six months. Electronic communication includes e-mail, instant messaging and faxes.

The FSA has applied an exemption to recording voice conversations on mobile phones and other handheld devices for the next 18 months, claiming that technology required to tape and store mobile phone conversations is new and untested.

However, vendor Liquid Voice say their call recording products record and store calls from mobile devices, in compliance with the aims of new FSA regulations.

The FSA regulations are being introduced in line with an EU review, including the addition of a taping requirement, under the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID).

The introduction of the taping programme is part of the FSA’s efforts to combat market abuse, particularly insider dealing and market manipulation.

Chris Berry, Director of Liquid Voice, says: “We believe the new FSA regulations are a really positive thing. Not only will the new rules help companies avoid allegations of insider dealing, it will help their TCF (Treating Customers Fairly) policies and protect them in the event of a transaction dispute.

“For a long time now the FSA has asked its members to be proactive about keeping records of communications, in order to protect both the members themselves and their clients. Unfortunately, as the bulk of organisations take the stance that ‘if it’s not a requirement, we’re not interested’; the FSA now clearly deems legislation to be the only way forward.

“TCF is high on the priority list for the FSA and with increasing cases being highlighted in the media of rogue individuals manipulating customers for their own gains, it is understandable that something like this is being implemented – it’s been a long time coming in my view.”