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GDPR could speed up mortgage process, say SMP

The implementation of General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in May 2018 offers significant benefits for advisers, according to The Society of Mortgage Professionals (SMP).

Vishal Pandya, head of operations, assured that a ‘right of data portability’ clause it contains will make transferring data between service providers effortless – as long as it has been created by themselves – which could result in the mortgage application process becoming quicker.

“As customers find it easier to transfer their data between organisations, mortgage affordability checks could become streamlined and a whole lot easier,” he stated. “Furthermore, firms enlisted in the FCA’s regulatory sandbox are looking at mortgage affordability, so perhaps GDPR could form a pathway to move the industry forward.”

Pandya also seeks to protect against lock-in effects. “Consequently, customers will be able to move around more freely and their data transferred without hindrance, thereby expediting the whole process.”

He went on: “The right of data portability only applies where data is processed by automated means and the data subject has provided consent to the data processing. Any information being transferred must therefore be in a commonly used format and be machine-readable.”

Pandya admitted, however, that issues with collating and forwarding data could arise, given that different organisations in the mortgage sector tend to use their own individual systems. “Legacy systems may not initially be compatible with newer software,” he cautioned.

Speaking on GDPR’s potential success, he added: “In general, GDPR will give people greater access to any information stored about them, the legal basis behind it and the period of storage. It will also ensure that firms cannot mix data for the provision of products/services with that used for marketing purposes.”

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