July 26th, 2011 1:51pm | Call Recording, Compliance, FSA, PCI, recordX, Regulations,

Firstly, in an ever-litigious world, the need to be able to prove actions has become a necessity for companies processing financial transactions over the phone – e.g.  call centres and the legal sector - or in public sector organisations where there are liability issues.

Secondly, the recording of calls is an excellent aid to training and staff development functions, whilst the final reason is that the technology has become both more sophisticated – integration with Communications Management for example - as well as more cost effective.

Thirdly, Compliance. There are a number of organisations where Call Recording is either mandatory, for example, Fire, Police and Ambulance services, or where it is about to become mandatory through regulation – for example, the Financial Service Authority regulations which come in to force in November 2011.


Call Recording applications can be based upon CPE (Customer premises equipment in many formats) or network based as supplied at the core of carrier networks. Both forms have a web or browser based interface for tracking down and listening to recorded calls.

Sensible users of Call Recording recognise that the ‘smart money’ should be spent and invested in solutions that permit rapid location and playback of calls from anywhere they have a network connection and the having the ability to integrate call recording with other applications such as Call Management and business process software such as CRM (Customer Relationship Management).

Work Smart

The smart features of Call Recording are the ones that speed up your business processes and identify problem areas so the ability to listen to calls from any web enabled location is great as is the ability to use natural language ‘word searches’. This means that you can interrogate the call recording for key words, examples such as  ‘sale’, ‘order’, ‘complaint’, etc..  and bring up a list of the calls containing those words for any given time period to listen to. You can identify a training problem and make the necessary improvements. 

Likewise, on the sales side of a business you can go back to any call recording where there is a subsequent dispute on the order and prove the point one way or another.

FSA Regulation

For fixed line call companies in the Financial Services sector have had to record all incoming and outgoing calls for years. The purpose of this requirement was to reduce insider trading, fraud and miss-selling as well as encourage best practice. However, with an increasingly dispersed and flexible workforce, more and more business is being carried out on mobile phones. This prompted the FSA (Financial Services Authority) to announce its plans for the removal of the exemption of mobile phones from call recording legislation and means that from the 14th November 2011, mobile call recording will be mandatory for FSA-regulated businesses including banks, hedge fund managers, stockbrokers, financial and commodity derivatives firms.

The policy directive requires the recording and storage of all ‘relevant communications’ made with, sent from, or received on mobile phones and other handheld electronic communication devices.

The legislation also states that all relevant communications made on a financial institution’s fixed or mobile devices must be recorded and archived for at least six months.

PCI DSS Compliance

PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard) features a group of principles and a set of requirements that aim to safeguard sensitive card data across the card payment industry.

When you consider that fraud can potentially account for between two and three percent of the bottom line for Financial Services companies, it's hardly surprising that payment card providers and their merchants are targeting issues such as Card Holder Not Present Fraud. That's why the leading card operators came together to create the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) - a set of industry-wide requirements and processes aimed at fighting payment card fraud.

Today's UK Contact Centres handle millions of card-based financial transactions - and that's across a wide range of sectors, not just Financial Services. PCI DSS can help minimise the potential for fraud, and that makes good business sense for Contact Centres.

The Payment Card Industry (PCI) launched the Data Security Standard (DSS) back in 2007 to protect merchants from the increasing risk of fraud. PCI DSS is a combination of security policies, technology and network changes aimed at minimising fraud by reducing system exposure.

The main issue addressed by PCI compliance is data storage, making it an offence to store both the credit card numbers and three-digit security codes on premises, which together can be used to make fraudulent transactions.

Mandatory Compliance

From the 1st of October 2010 every merchant in the UK was required to be compliant, but at present compliance is only mandatory for Level 1 & 2 merchants. These levels apply to the volume of transactions your business processes each year. Level 1 is more than £6 million, Level 2 £1-6 million, Level 3 20k – 1 million and Level 4 up to 20k.

From the Contact Centre perspective you specifically need to be aware of recording platforms that automatically record customers speaking their card details, creating a potential breach of compliance.

The primary goal should be to avoid recording credit card data in the first place by muting audio and excluding credit card data input from screen recording.

An innovative approach here is to hand control of the call over to an automated credit card payment system at this point. This resolves this problem as call recording can be deactivated for the automated leg of the call and restarted when an agent takes back the call. In turn, customers buy-in to this process because of the obvious security benefits - we are creating a positive customer experience, particularly for those who are reluctant to disclose their credit card details to an agent.

Oak Telecoms call recording solutions will meet these requirements and resellers/users should call us on 0800 9889 625 to find out how we can make your organisation compliant with these regulations.

Benefits of Call Recording:

  • Call Recording can identify training needs in private and public organisations
  • Call Recording provides evidence of actions taken, vital in liability and financial interactions
  • Integration with Communications Management applications provides the complete cost analysis of your operation
  • Call Recording can provide Compliance with industry regulation
  • Call Recording can identify who your most and least successful agents are.
  • Call Recording can tell you who is making excessive personal telephone calls
  • Call Recording provides the measurement for your management

We regularly publish articles regarding call recording compliance; currently available articles can be reviewed here. All general Call Recording articles can be found here.

For more information about our award winning recordX Call Recording solution, check out the dedicated product page. If you'd like to talk to Oak about our call recording solutions, or any of our other products, please drop us a line on 0800 9889 625.

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