By

Yuet Ming Tham

22 August 2018

Fintech Without Borders: Regulators Consult on Global Financial Innovation Network

On August 7, a group of regulators from 11 jurisdictions published a consultation (the Consultation) on the Global Financial Innovation Network (the GFIN), which aims to promote international cooperation on innovation and the use of technology in financial services (FinTech) and in regulatory processes (RegTech).

The group — which includes the U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the UK Financial Conduct Authority (the FCA), the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) and the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) — is one of the first major collaborative efforts on FinTech and RegTech issues among regulators in developed financial services markets. The Consultation builds on the FCA’s proposal earlier this year to create a “global sandbox” for innovative financial services firms.

This post summarizes the proposed role of the GFIN, the issues on which its founding regulators are consulting and how these may affect financial services firms.

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16 April 2018

Hong Kong Issues EU Data Privacy Law Guidance on the upcoming GDPR

The Hong Kong Office of the Privacy Commissioner for Personal Data (the “Hong Kong Data Privacy Commissioner”) has recently published compliance guidance on the upcoming GDPR to raise awareness in Hong Kong companies about the potential effects and reforms needed in order to comply with the new GDPR requirements. (more…)

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15 March 2018

Singapore Joins APEC Cross-Border Privacy Rules System and Privacy Recognition for Processors Program

On March 6, 2018, Singapore announced that it has joined the APEC Cross-Border Privacy Rules (CBPR) system as well as the APEC Privacy Recognition for Processors (PRP) program. Singapore is the sixth member of the CBPR system, which includes Canada, Japan, Korea, Mexico and the United States, and is the second member of the PRP program after the US. (more…)

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01 March 2018

Monetary Authority of Singapore Consults on Proposed E-Payments User Protection Guidelines

On Feb. 13, 2018, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) issued a Consultation Paper on the Proposed E-Payments User Protection Guidelines (Consultation Paper). Under the Consultation Paper, the MAS proposes to issue a set of guidelines (Guidelines) to standardize the protection offered to individuals or micro-enterprises from losses arising from unauthorized or mistaken payment transactions.

The Guidelines are part of MAS’s ongoing review of Singapore’s regulatory framework for payment services.  They are meant to provide general guidance and are not intended to be comprehensive or to replace or override any legislation.

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27 December 2017

Hong Kong to Further Regulate Drones

With the rise in drone usage for both commercial and recreational activities, air safety regulators around the world have increasingly focused on the impact of drones (otherwise known as unmanned aircraft systems or UAS) on flight safety and efficiency. Consistent with calls by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) for more oversight, Hong Kong’s Civil Aviation Department (CAD) recently announced plans to step up the regulation of commercial and recreational drones.

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16 October 2017

Proposed Changes to Singapore’s Data Protection Act

On July 27, 2017, the Personal Data Protection Commission (PDPC) initiated a public consultation to consider several significant proposed changes to Singapore’s Personal Data Protection Act 2012 (PDPA). Citing technological advances and global developments, the PDPC proposed changes that would have the effect of (1) broadening the circumstances under which organizations could collect, use and disclose personal data without consent and (2) imposing a mandatory data breach notification requirement in certain situations.

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11 September 2017

FinTech and Regulatory Sandboxes in the UK, Hong Kong and Singapore

As the FinTech industry continues to expand, regulators around the globe are starting to react. The past 18 months have seen the emergence of a new trend in financial services regulation, the “sandbox.”

Since the launch of the UK’s regulatory sandbox in May 2016, regulators across the globe have adopted similar frameworks. There are now regulatory sandboxes in Abu Dhabi, Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, Lithuania, Singapore, Switzerland and Thailand, to name a few, and the European Union recently set out proposals for a possible EU-wide regulatory sandbox. (more…)

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04 August 2017

Singapore’s Privacy Watchdog Proposes Changes to Personal Data Protection Act

Singapore’s Personal Data Protection Commission (PDPC) has launched a public consultation into a proposed revision to the law that would require reporting of certain data breaches. Singapore currently uses a voluntary approach to data breach notifications, but, according to the PDPC, this has resulted in uneven notification practices. Under the proposals, it will be mandatory for organizations to inform customers of personal data breaches that pose any risk of impact or harm to the affected individual as soon as they are discovered. If an incident involves 500 or more individuals, organizations will need to notify the PDPC as soon as possible but no later than 72 hours after discovery of the breach. The proposals aim to allow individuals to take steps to protect their interests in the event of a data breach, for example, by changing their password. (more…)

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27 April 2017

Singapore’s Personal Data Protection Commission Publishes Advisory Guidelines on the Use of Anonymized Data

The Personal Data Protection Act, 2012 (PDPA), Singapore’s general data protection law, governs the collection, use and disclosure of personal data. The Singapore Personal Data Protection Commission (PDPC), which enforces the PDPA, recently updated the chapter on data anonymization found in its Advisory Guidelines (Guidelines). The Guidelines are not legally binding but provide guidance on how the PDPC will interpret the PDPA. The revisions encourage organizations to incorporate into the process of anonymizing data an inquiry into the risks that the data may be re-identified and any potential negative effect on the individuals involved rather than focusing purely on the various techniques to anonymize the data.

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12 April 2017

Proposed Strengthening of Singapore Cybersecurity Law

In keeping with Singapore’s recent emphasis on strengthening national cybersecurity protections, on March 9, 2017, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) announced proposed amendments to the existing Computer Misuse and Cybersecurity Act (CMCA). The proposed amendment, Bill No. 15/2017, would broaden the scope of the CMCA by criminalizing certain conduct not covered by the existing law and enhancing penalties in certain situations.

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