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Payments & FinTech Lawyer

Volume: 9 Issue: 3
(March 2015)


The UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) issued on 13 March its final guidance on financial promotions on social media, following a consultation on draft guidance published in August 2014. The final guidance aims to ensure firms’ compliance with the FCA’s financial promotion rules and echoes the draft’s approach that these rules should be media neutral. / read more

The European Payments Council (EPC) and the Cards Stakeholders Group released on 10 March their draft version 7.05 of the SEPA Cards Standardisation Volume, which proposes standardisation requirements for remote payments; consultation on the draft is open until 5 June 2015. / read more

The UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) published on 12 March its review into the Current Account Switching Service (CASS), finding that the increase in switching volumes since CASS launched has been small and changes in provider behaviour ‘limited.’ / read more


The continuing risk of cyber attacks, which can be devastating for businesses and are impossible to defend against entirely, has brought into focus the potential of cyber insurance as a means to soften the blow in the event of a cyber attack. While the US market for cyber insurance is significant already, in the UK it is less advanced, although as Tom Webley, Peter Hardy and Eleanor Nugent of Reed Smith explain, it is developing. In this article, Tom, Peter and Eleanor discuss the response of the insurance market to the risks, what drives growth in cyber insurance policies, and the steps organisations putting cyber insurance policies into place should take in order to ensure they are adequately protected. / read more

As of 10 March, users of Barclays’ mobile payment app Pingit can make payments using just the Twitter handle of the payee. By Lucy Frew and Sophie van Wingerden of Kemp Little, London. / read more

China’s new cyber security proposals have caused widespread concern amongst businesses and government particularly in the US, as the proposals include for instance requirements to submit the source code behind banking software to the Chinese authorities. Richard Bird, John K. Warren and Eric Dickinson of Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer discuss the new proposals and whether they can be challenged. / read more

Apple’s mobile payments venture, Apple Pay, is expected to launch in Europe during the first half of 2015. While Apple Pay has attracted plenty of attention, a number of issues could impede Apple Pay’s entry into Europe. Apple faces the problem of gaining enough market share to prompt retailers to accept it, for example, and there remain thorny challenges around how customer data is shared. Masha Cilliers, Founder of Payment Options, an online and mobile payments consultancy, examines the challenges facing Apple Pay and whether players in payments should fear Apple just yet. / read more

In December 2014 the New York Department of Financial Services (‘NYDFS’) updated its ground-breaking draft virtual currency business regulations. In July 2014, NYDFS became the first US state banking regulator to publish draft regulations concerning virtual currency businesses (‘VCB’). In July, Bitcoin was still trading above $500 and had recently reached its peak of over $1,000. Virtual currency start-ups were clamouring for a regulatory framework in which they could invest without fear of going to jail. It was hoped that the first draft of the VCB regulations, commonly referred to as BitLicense regulations, would pave the way into the brave new world of fully-licensed VCB start-ups. By Adam Atlas, Attorney at Law. / read more

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (‘MAS’) released on 16 February a consultation paper (the ‘Paper’), detailing its proposed measures to facilitate securities-based crowdfunding as an alternative source of private financing for SMEs, as Quek Li Fei, Simon Trevethick and Paul Yap of Colin Ng & Partners LLP discuss. / read more

Amid the continued discussion around the regulation of Bitcoin and other digital currencies, Adam Vaziri, Director at Diacle and a member of the board at the UK Digital Currency Association, addresses some misconceptions regarding the regulation of digital currencies, looks at the current regulatory position, how the technology could change that paradigm through decentralisation, and finally touches on how the underlying blockchain technology behind Bitcoin can be utilised beyond Bitcoin itself. / read more

About Payments & FinTech Lawyer

The monthly publication covering legal, regulatory and policy developments relating to the fast-moving payments and FinTech sectors. Key topics include mobile payments, e-money, prepaid and other payment cards, online banking, digital currencies such as Bitcoin, card fraud and other cyber crime, RegTech, robo-advice, P2P lending, and crowdfunding, as well as regulatory regimes such as the Second Payment Services Directive (PSD2), the Payment Accounts Directive, and the Fourth Anti-Money Laundering Directive / read more

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