Financial firms subject to MiFID II must tackle the problem of recording, retaining and providing access to market communications in order to comply with the regulation’s data retention requirements and satisfy any increased regulatory scrutiny of recorded calls and emails.
Robert Powell, global head of compliance and product management at Etrali Trading Solutions, says many firms have much to do to avoid breaching the records retention requirements of MiFID II as they work towards the implementation of the regulation in 2016. He explains: “The average person conducts 10 to 12 times more communication by phone than by email. Considering that one person generates at least 1Gbyte of emails per year, this means there is a huge amount of communications data to be managed in large organisations. We are finding that most organisations are interested in storing the data in an external cloud environment that has the security, encryption and access control they need, but is also cheap enough to store vast quantities of data for the next five years or so.”
Over the next few years, Powell expects firms to move away from the low cost, but difficult to access, tape solutions used to store data and migrate towards digital storage solutions for call recording. Facing the prospect of extended data retention requirements and increased regulatory scrutiny, firms will need to be able to recover data and extract it in a format that is acceptable to regulators. Powell comments: “Our customers are looking for good data centres with secure archiving and reliable indexing. That is what we are looking to deliver to the market.”
While many communications archiving and indexing solutions in the market are designed for US firms that store data in the US and are subject to the Patriot Act, Etrali is focusing on the European market. Powell explains: “If you look historically at the main participants in this market, you see a lot of players based either in the US or North America. For a European organisation, storing data in the US is just not viable, it is not acceptable as a business practice. We are a European-based organisation and our focus is to offer European companies the ability to store data in Europe.”
Etrali’s solution to the data retention and access problem is under development, but Powell notes that it will combine the company’s voice recording and records retention capabilities to deliver a single platform that will allow customers to manage data across the board.