By Simon Hochhauser, Founder and CEO of PiPcall
Increased Flexibility as Lockdown Becomes History
The staged ending of lockdown rules over the next few months provides the financial service industry with new working opportunities. Freed from the physical constraints of the desk, many staff will wish to conduct business when out and about. This adds enormously to the flexibility of professional staff whose working environment will comprise a hybrid of home, office, and outside locations.
Regulatory Requirement for the Recording and Storage of Mobile Calls
Calls made and received by banks, insurers, traders, investment firms, wealth advisors and other financial service companies need to be securely recorded and stored within tight MiFID-II and other global rules.
Regulations requiring call recording are made:
- To ensure evidence exists to resolve disputes between firms and clients;
- To assist those empowered to supervise code of conduct adherence within the firm; and
- To help deter market abuse, through enhanced detection.
The Challenge of the Legacy Investment
Financial services companies have a heavy investment in cloud-based PBX systems which provide the secure recording of calls to and from employees whilst at the desk. Calls are automatically logged, recorded and stored on secure servers connected to the PBX system.
However, a major challenge for financial services businesses arises from business calls made and received on mobile devices when staff are out and about. The regulatory requirement for the recording and storage of these calls does not differ from those made on fixed office phone systems.
Extending Call Recording and Storage to Mobile Calls
Companies respond to the challenge of mobile call recording in a few ways:
- PBX-linked softphone apps are available on mobile smartphones, either dedicated business or personal devices. These VOIP apps place and receive calls through an internet data connection to and from the corporate cloud-based system. Calls are recorded and stored on the company’s dedicated server.
However, away from a stable Wi-Fi environment these calling apps utilise heavily contended mobile data connectivity that does not prioritise the voice stream. Calls suffer from poor quality, frequent cut-offs and heavy use of battery.
- Companies that provide mobile devices can utilise dedicated call recording services offered by network companies and specialist providers. The secure recording and storage service incurs high service charges and entails the hassle of combining files with those separately stored by the fixed office phone system. The provision of separate mobile phones involves heavy expense in capital outlay, management, maintenance and insurance, and is not environmentally friendly.
- Some firms do not permit the use of personal mobile phones for business calls. Others may turn a blind eye to the fact that business calls are made on personal or business mobile devices without complying with the need for regulated call recording and storage. This is clearly not acceptable, and the breach could incur major penalties or worse.
- PiPxt is a high-quality GSM calling app that turns the mobile phone into a full extension of the main office phone system. All incoming and outgoing calls using PiPxt are routed via a company’s existing PBX infrastructure. Calls are automatically securely recorded and stored on the company’s installed MiFID-compliant server. Other system features, including direct extension dialling, group pickup, IVR, hunt groups and central corporate voice mail, are automatically applied to the mobile user at no extra cost. Calls use the company’s national and international tariff plan provided as part of the office phone system contract. Furthermore, the PiPxt app can be applied to the company’s staff worldwide.
When PiPxt is provided for use on personal mobiles, it is a complete phone in a phone. Only calls made and received via the app can be recorded and the app has no access to any personal data. It has its own separate business number, usually the owner’s DDI, and includes a dedicated contacts directory, history, favourites and access to corporate voice mail. All app-routed business calls are made at no charge to the phone user. Visit our website to learn more about extending call recording to staff mobiles.
Simon is a serial telecommunications and software entrepreneur. He was the founder and developer of video streaming company Homechoice (acquired by TalkTalk), software emulator Insignia Solutions (floated on Nasdaq) and mobile telephony reseller Cellcom.
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