Financial Services Compliance
in the U.K. and Europe

An Overview of Electronic Recordkeeping Regulations in the United Kingdom and European Union.

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United Kingdom Recordkeeping Regulations

In the United Kingdom (U.K.), one of the key creators of financial regulations is the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), which is an independent organization that regulates financial firms and protects the integrity of U.K. financial markets.

As with the SEC and FINRA in the United States, the FCA takes the approach that the mode or channel of communication is largely irrelevant. What is far more important is the content of any given communication. 

Through its “Finalised Guidance” document, the FCA states that: 

  • Firms should aim to be clear and fair in all communication and never mislead investors;
  • Any post or piece of content that encourages (or incentivizes) financial activity has the potential to be deemed a financial promotion under FCA rules;
  • All tweets, posts, etc. need to be considered on their own merits and follow all relevant rules;
  • As with all promotions, firms should make potential investors aware of both the risks and potential benefits of an investment product;
  • Although we tend to think of social media communication as rather fleeting and ephemeral, a record is created each time we post or tweet, which is why FCA defines social media communication as ‘non-real time;’
  • Recordkeeping of social media content is required. The FCA states that “we expect firms to perform risk management in this area and assess for themselves what they consider ‘significant communications’ to keep records of. When making this assessment firms should bear in mind the need to demonstrate compliance if required to do so, as well as queries and complaints from customers which may require evidence.”  

According to the FCA, archiving and record retention of digital content is important in protecting consumer and investor data and keeping the company’s integrity intact. After all, the goal of the FCA is to ensure safe and honest markets for individuals, organizations, and the economy as a whole.

Although the FCA guidance regarding online data is not itself a regulation that financial services need to comply with, it does show what organizations need to do in order to ensure that their use of online channels and platforms conform to existing recordkeeping rules

European Electronic Recordkeeping Requirements

Financial services organizations in Europe are governed by the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID II), which went into effect at the start of 2018 to expand on the regulations of 2007’s MiFID I. 

The breadth of this E.U. regulation is significant not only in the number of organizations it impacts (large banks, registered investment advisors, asset management firms, etc.), but also in the variety of operational areas it addresses. 

Predictably, MiFID II rules also deal with online data such as webpages, social media accounts, mobile text messages, and enterprise collaboration content. Under MiFID II, data governance and electronic recordkeeping demands extend to anything that can impact or ultimately result in a trade—and communications from webpages, social media channels, and mobile text messages would obviously fall within this definition. 

With this in mind, financial services organizations must have a management, archiving, and retention strategy in place that deals with this data in a responsible manner and ensures that it is accurately recorded for compliance purposes.          

Pagefreezer assists financial services organizations in tackling the following critical challenges:

Financial Services Recordkeeping Compliance

Financial services regulations demand that online data such as webpages, social media posts, mobile text messages, and enterprise collaboration conversations be captured and preserved to comply with recordkeeping requirements. This data should also be stored in a way that makes it easy to find, search, and export specific content during regulatory audits.

eDiscovery & Litigation Readiness

Website, social media, mobile text, and enterprise collaboration content is increasingly forming part of the eDiscovery and litigation process. Because of this, financial institutions need to be able to capture, preserve, and eventually present this data in a defensible format that complies with legal rules of evidence.

Monitoring and Data Loss Prevention

Website content should be archived and regularly reviewed to ensure that messaging complies with financial industry industry regulations. Similarly, social media accounts should be monitored to ensure that no non-compliant or inaccurate claims are being made to the public, and team communication tools should be monitored for data loss prevention.

Online Data Security and Privacy

With increased focus on data security and user privacy—and stringent new regulations like the GDPR threatening major fines—it is crucial for financial services organizations to know exactly what user data they are collecting/holding, and establish processes that make it simple to delete/export this information upon request.

Pagefreezer Recordkeeping Solutions

Pagefreezer allows financial services organizations to monitor, collect, and archive the following online data:

Website Content

Our technology archives complex, dynamic websites. We collect full metadata, adding digital signatures and timestamps to every page.

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Social Media Accounts

Thanks to API integrations, we monitor and archive major social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter in real-time.

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Enterprise Collaboration Platforms

With our comprehensive archiving solution, you can monitor and archive enterprise collaboration data from platforms like Workplace by Facebook, Slack, Chatter, and Yammer.

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Mobile Text Messages

Whether you utilize employer-issued or BYOD phones, we archive mobile text messages to ensure compliance.

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See how Pagefreezer can help your organization

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