BSP Backs Senate Bill Protecting Financial Accounts vs Cybercrime

The BSP supported a Senate bill protecting financial accounts from cybercrime.

BSP — The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas said on Saturday that it supported a Senate bill aiming to protect financial accounts from cybercrime.

This, as digital transactions in the Philippines continued to increase because of the pandemic.

Photo source: ABS-CBN News

BSP said in a statement that the proposed Senate Bill No. 2380 or Bank Account, E-Wallet, and Other Financial Accounts Regulation would help authorities counter cybercriminals and syndicates from attacking e-wallets and bank accounts.

The said measure covered phishing, misrepresentation, fraudulent bank transactions, among other things, they said.

The legislative measure will strengthen the country’s legal framework for financial consumer welfare and foster greater public awareness on cybersecurity,” the BSP explained.

The central bank also pointed out that its immediate passage would boost the public’s confidence in digital transactions and to “promote the country’s financial stability”.

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Senator Grace Poe, who filed the said measure, said that safeguards should be put in place in order to protect digital platforms operating in the Philippines.

One of its goals was to require financial institutions and banks to respond to cybercrime cases “with more urgency” and improve payment schemes, online platforms, and data security as well.

Citing BSP data, Senator Poe added that the majority or at least 98% of the crime reports filed by banks from March 15 to May 18 last year were “online in nature”, worth PHP 60.6 million.

Meanwhile, the Philippine National Police (PNP) said that online scams increased by 37% from March to September last year compared to the same period in 2019, the senator noted.

Under BSP’s digital payments transformation road map, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas was aiming to have at least 70% of Filipino adults with a financial account.

Earlier, BSP Governor Benjamin Diokno said that digitalization has kept the economic gears running, while most businesses were closed during last year’s lockdown.

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