FCA has published a thematic review setting out the potential key risks mobile banking and payments present. It notes that not all of the risks are the same as those of internet banking and notes specifically dangers relating to:

  • fraud - for both firms and customers, but FCA is concerned mainly with the risk of fraud against consumers;
  • security and the risk of malware and viruses;
  • use of third parties, specifically the chain of responsibility for problems or losses that occur;
  • consumer awareness and understanding. FCA is concerned that the smaller screens and limited keypads of smartphones and tablets make consumer error more likely;
  • risk of IT failure and service interruption; and
  • anti-money laundering systems and controls particularly where mobile banking services are not linked to the customer's current account.

FCA will now visit a sample of high street banks and other firms that provide mobile banking services to assess how they are addressing these risks. It will report again in mid-2014 but in the meantime encourages all providers to consider the risks and how they mitigate them. (Source: FCA Outlines Mobile Banking Risks)