BOJ mandates 90% ABM cash availability in new rules Loop Jamaica

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8 key areas covered by in the new rules

Loop News

3 hrs ago – Updated

iStock photo depicts a woman using an automated bank machine (ABM).

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The Bank of Jamaica (BOJ) has released comprehensive service-level standards to govern the operation of automated banking machines (ABMs) by deposit-taking institutions (DTIs) under central bank regulation.

Issued on April 2, these standards provide detailed guidelines for DTIs, who have a nine-month transition period to ensure compliance with the far-reaching requirements.

Below is a full breakdown of the requirements:

Availability of Cash

Minimum 90 per cent of ABMs to be operationalMinimum 95 per cent uptime for operational ABMsMaximum time out of cash: 60 consecutive minutes (urban and resort areas), 180 minutes  (other areas)A board-approved ABM cash-risk-management policy & proceduresTo aid in assessing the demand for cash and ensure that cash levels are adjusted accordingly to prevent shortagesPeriodic reviews of ABM restocking schedules so that  cash levels do not fall below determined minimum thresholds;Appropriate technology to alert the DTI when each machine reaches the minimum floor, and when it is out of cash;Contingency plans to address unexpected events, such as sudden spikes in demand or technical failures.

Maintenance and management of service disruption

Implement systems for real-time notification to DTI when a machine is out of serviceNotify customers when a machine malfunctions for a prolonged period of timeDowntime should not be for more than three consecutive hoursCustomers within a specified geographical radius to be provided with information on nearby ABMs and the banking services they offer.

ABM fees and charges

Customers have the right to transparent information about products/services and their pricesTransparently and comprehensively disclose ABM fees and charges to customers, including displaying them prominently at ABM locationsBOJ will commission assessments of ABM-related fees to determine their reasonableness and relevance. The assessment will help to ensure that fees are aligned with costs associated with the provision of the service/services, while balancing considerations of affordability by consumersRepresent all fees in units of Jamaican Dollars (JMD) to avoid ambiguity and ensure consistency in the disclosure of fees. Financial customers are to know the full costs associated with ABM services and be able to compare costs across providersBefore increasing ABM fees, DTIs are required to write to BOJ to provide justification and request the non-objection of the regulator;Fees can be increased if the regulator indicates, in writing, a non-objection to the proposed change in fees or the regulator does not object within 30 days of the date on which the application for a non-objection is madeHaving received a non-objection, the DTI should give at least 45 days’ notice to the public of its intention to adjust the fees.

Deployment of machines

DTIs to provide regulator with two months’ notice of intention to remove an ABM, with justification for its removal, and a plan of action outlining reasonable alternative access for customers, as well as the method of public notificationABMs to have audit trail and log capabilities comprehensive enough to facilitate investigations, reconciliation and dispute resolution.DTIs to ensure the display of customer support information for direct access by customers who have experienced loss of card or funds resulting from the use of ABMs. Clear service-level standards are also expected from DTIs in such cases.

Accessibility and ease-of-use

Ramps to be installed at ABM locations to improve access for disabled persons, subject to relevant legislationInfrastructure and technology to be in place at ABMs to improve customer experience for the elderly and disabled, subject to relevant legislation.

Fraud minimisation

Customers are to be protected from loss of assets during their use of banking servicesDTIs are required to conduct annual assessments of ABMs to determine whether enhanced policies, procedures, protocols or technology are needed to remedy emergent security/fraud risksIf the assessment shows the need for new technology, the DTI must submit to BOJ, an action plan outlining the process by which the new technology will be implementedDTIs are to include in their cash-risk-management policy, appropriate measures to limit the possibility of various types of fraud.

Safety and security of customers

ABMs are to be situated in a manner and in locations that ensure a satisfactory level of security for users, including maintaining the confidentiality of their transactionsDTIs are to ensure that cash management service providers utilise appropriate security measures.

Financial education of ABM users

DTIs are to provide financial education programmes to increase customers’ knowledge about the proper use of ABMs and the associated risks;DTIs are to inform customers how to recognise ABMs that have been tampered with to facilitate fraud.

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