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UK FCA turns the screws on compliance in work-from-home environment

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The Financial Conduct Authority has warned banks that they must now provide the same standard of surveillance of staff working from home as they would in an office environment.

In a speech delivered by Julia Hoggart – appropriately enough from her own home – the FCA’s director of market oversight says that while scenarios emerged early in the pandemic where the usual levels of recording and surveillance were not possible, firms should now have to overcome these challenges.

“Our expectation is that going forward, office and working from home arrangements should be equivalent – this is not a market for information that we wish to see be arbitraged,” she says. “We expect firms to have updated their policies, refreshed their training and put in place rigorous oversight reflecting the new environment – particularly regarding the risk of use of privately owned devices.”

She says that such policies should prevent the use of privately owned devices for relevant activities where recording is not possible. New communication mechanisms, before they are used, should have controls in place where required and their use be approved by firm management.

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