New e-KYC guideline issued for speedy account opening

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According to the guideline, applicants’ photographs will be taken on spots

Bangladesh Financial Intelligence Unit (BFIU) on Wednesday issued an electronic Know Your Customer (e-KYC) guideline to open accounts in the financial sector without filling up any paper-based documents.

The new guideline on account opening will applicable for bank account, BO (Beneficiary Owners) account and insurance policy account.

The guidelines will help opening accounts by those who are illiterates, as traditional paper-based documentation for account opening requires applicants’ signatures.

However, those with the e-KYC accounts will be allowed only limited scale transactions, ranging from Tk20,000 to Tk 5 lakh, in a development that will give momentum to the country’s financial inclusion drive, says Md Anwarul Islam, general manager at the Financial Inclusion Department of Bangladesh Bank.

He says the financial services will be more efficient and easy due to the e-system. With e-KYC system, a client can open a bank account, BO (beneficiary owner) account and insurance policy account within 5 to 10 minutes, he adds.

Prior to the launching of e-KYC system, BFIU implemented a pilot programme at 52 locations in 33 districts involving 19 banks,  a non-bank financial institution and a mobile financial services provider, says a  press release of BFIU.

According to the guideline, applicants’ photographs will be taken on spots and customer’s identification data authenticated instantly. The thumb print will serve as the digital signature.

An inter-agency working group–consisting of BB, Bangladesh Financial Intelligence Group, Election Commission, Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission, Access to Finance (A2i), ICT ministry and some other financial institutions were involved in finalizing the e-KYC guidelines.