Source: Central Bank of the Russian Federation in English
30 December 2020
When selling financial products and services through websites and mobile applications, financial institutions should both maintain a high quality of their interactions with customers and respect consumer rights. This follows from the Bank of Russia’s recommendations.
The regulator suggests that remote selling should not rely on agreements with a default customer’s consent to certain product parameters or additional services. Companies are also recommended to include a provision whereby their customers may refuse to buy a financial product or a service. Moreover, the refusal procedure should be as simple as the execution of an online agreement.
The Bank of Russia also reminds companies that consumers shall be able to download to their PCs, smartphones or other devices any information related to their agreements and received in the course of communications with financial institutions, including their online correspondence in the chat.
Information provided to consumers via remote channels shall be comprehensible and easy-to-read. If customers do not understand professional terminology, they should have a chance to ask questions. Companies are also recommended to avoid using unfair practices involving the substitution of one financial product with another without explaining its peculiarities and risks, or the hard-selling of additional financial products (instruments).
For individuals living in remote or low-populated regions with a weak Internet signal and low access speed, the Bank of Russia recommends that financial institutions prepare light versions of their websites or mobile apps, with the final choice of those versions to be made by consumers. Keeping in mind the needs of disabled consumers, certain components of websites or mobile apps shall be compatible with special programmes and comply with the requirements of the relevant national standard.
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