Trading sector regulation drives mobile operator development

The heavy regulation of the trading sector is driving IT investments and suppliers are reacting with services that help companies comply

The heavy regulation of the trading sector is driving IT investments, and suppliers are reacting with services that help companies comply.

Mobile operator EE has introduced a voice-recording service that trading companies can use to record phone communications relating to trades. This is part of EE’s B2B strategy, known as “In the City”, which is targeting City firms with services to secure mobile devices and help them comply with regulations.

EE’s FCA regulation compliant Mobile Voice Recording, is integrated in the network and can be used on any mobile device. The FCA regulation is designed to stop market abuse.

EE developed it with Etrali Trading Solutions, which integrates voice capture and analytics platforms for the financial markets. The service automatically records calls and stores them for six months.

The service works with any handset and automatically records all calls. Users don’t need to open apps to access the service or remember to dial prefix numbers before making calls, reducing overall call costs. 

According to James Blackburn, director at financial services technology provider Fidessa, “the current hands-on regulatory regime, the very heavy fines that are being imposed, the high-profile prosecutions, and the increasing move to a zero-tolerance approach have all raised the importance of effective monitoring for market abuse for all firms, regardless of size."

The increase in the importance of mobile devices in business is an opportunity for mobile operators to bundle services connectivity.

Rik Turner, senior analyst financial services technology, at Ovum, said: “The evolution of mobile recording has already seen the SIM-based approach prevail over software clients and now managed network operators are gradually moving in to compete against managed virtual network operators. Ovum's thinks they will win and call recording will become a tick-box option in enterprises' contracts with their mobile provider.”

He said Vodafone has about an 80% share of the market in the city and EE could use services, such as voice recording, to make inroads into that domination.

“If the actual traders take EE to get a service like this, over time more of the city workers might move to EE,” Turner said.

Vodafone has used a software client to offer this service in the past rather than putting the service in the network or on a SIM. It worked with the company Compliant Phones but according to a source this relationship ended when there were problems with the technology.

Turner said the FCA has not fined any company yet for failure to meet the voice recording regulation that came into effect in 2011. “They are taking the softly, softly approach because the technology has not really been there. But this will not go on forever."



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