CBN issues Exposure Draft on Digital Financial Services Awareness Guidelines – The Sun Nigeria

By Chinwendu Obienyi

The The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has released an Exposure Draft for Digital Financial Services Awareness Guidelines to address gaps in consumer knowledge and practices with Digital Financial Services (DFS).

This was disclosed by the CBN in a circular titled “Digital Financial Services Awareness Guidelines”.

According to the CBN, the rules establish a set of principles and expectations that financial service providers must incorporate into the provision of DFS in order to promote consumer awareness, good treatment and positive outcomes.

CBN said, “DFS has the potential to expand access to financial services for the Nigerian population and drive innovation in the financial services sector.

“The guidelines provide a set of principles and expectations that financial service providers should incorporate into the provision of DFS to ensure consumer understanding, good treatment and positive outcomes.”

He said the provisions of the guidelines would apply to institutions providing DFS, including depository banks (DMBs), merchant banks, other financial institutions, payment service banks and other payment services authorized by the CBN.

The CBN listed the objectives of the guidelines which include digital financial literacy standards for digital financial service providers; align product development, promotion and consumer awareness on DFS among DFSPs; improving transparency and appropriate disclosure on DFS; provide for the development of financial literacy and consumer education materials on DFS; ensuring an evidence-based LDF approach; Integrate DFL into existing financial education programs; drive a targeted DFL approach for the underserved population; and to provide a standard for the promotion of DFL.

The apex bank said DFS should promote DFS awareness and education, provide information to help customers differentiate DFS products from traditional banking goods and services, and ensure easy access to information on all product offerings. so that consumers can make informed decisions.

In addition, part of the responsibility is to provide product information in plain English and local languages, to educate disadvantaged communities about DFS alternatives available to them, and to provide information on the use of products and how to obtain support services if needed.

Stephen V. Lee