Ever wonder if the telemarketer got your number or other details from your bank?
If you did, you could be mistaken. According to the Banking Codes and Standards Board of India’s (BCSBI) “code of bank’s commitment to customers”, the bank is supposed to treat your personal information as private and confidential. Once banks sign the BCSBI code, it is binding on them to follow it.
In fact, even if you are not an existing customer and your relationship with the bank has ended, the bank can’t share your details.
Through BCSBI, banks make a commitment that they won’t divulge your personalinformation or data to anyone. Personal details could be anything from your name, permanent account number or information about your tax returns. They also commit that they won’t share any data with other companies within their own group. Banks would share data for marketing purposes only if you authorize them to do so.
EXCEPTIONS TO THE RULE
If the law demands that the banks reveal details, they would do so. They will also do so if you ask them to do so after they have sought your permission. Also, if they think it’s their duty towards the public to reveal information, they will.
INFORMATION SHARING WITH CREDIT RATING AGENCIES
The bank will give the details about the credit you may have taken from it to credit rating agencies such as Credit Information Bureau (India) Ltd and ExperianCredit Information Co. of India Pvt. Ltd. For instance, if you’ve taken a car loan, the bank will share details such as the amount of debt, the number of months you have fallen behind on your payments and whether you have ever defaulted on a loan. The bank shares these details on a monthly basis. Banks also inform the credit rating agency if you have been a defaulter earlier but have taken steps to regularize the loan now. You can access your credit report by a paying a fee to the bank.
In fact, the code says that if you need to access any personal records that the bank holds, it will tell you the extent of your rights under the existing legal framework for accessing them.
WHAT IF THE BANK DOESN’T ADHERE TO CODE
If you think your bank has shared your personal details with a third party, you can file a complaint at www.bscbi.org.in. The easiest way to find out if your data has been shared is when you get calls-from a third party-asking you to make an investment or take a loan based on your bank balance. BSCBI takes action against banks not complying with the code.