After the announcement in January from the Malta Financial Services Authority, stating the significant pending changes to Maltese pension regulations, both companies and advisers alike felt the net tighten around their daily practices.
Although the GDPR—designed to augment consumers’ data protection and privacy—is the brainchild of the Council of the European Union and European Parliament, its reach extends far beyond Europe. In the United States, it is no longer a choice but a must for financial firms to adopt stricter consumer-data-protection measures. The costs of not doing so far outweigh the costs of compliance; regulators expect data security, and so do customers.
Without regulations, digitalisation is not feasible. New rules and laws are a headache for banks and increase the administrative burden while reducing client satisfaction. But they also create transparency and openness, which can lead to new and improved financial services. The challenge is how to provide new services in a customer-centric way. Regtech may be the solution.