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Just like mobile phones, bank account numbers can be portable if RBI has its way

S S Mundra, deputy governor of Reserve Bank of India (RBI), pushed for portability of bank accounts so as to allow customers to move easily to another bank without having to change their account numbers.

BT Online   New Delhi     Last Updated: May 31, 2017  | 11:49 IST
Just like mobile phones, bank account numbers can be portable if RBI has its way

Soon, you may be able to move from one bank to another without having to change your account number, if RBI has its way.

S S Mundra, deputy governor of Reserve Bank of India (RBI), pushed for portability of bank accounts so as to allow customers to move easily to another bank without having to change their account numbers.

"The prospect of an aggrieved customer moving his/her account to another bank in the near future is very real," he said, reported NDTV Profit.

At an event held by Banking Codes and Standards Board of India (BCSBI) in Mumbai, Mundra said that he supported this concept many years ago but lack of technology was the major hinderance. However, in today's era of digital payments this concept has the potential to be implemented, he said.

But Mundra also raised concerns of security risks with the use of technology in banking and finance.

"There have been several incidents of theft of personal information, fraudulent use of ATMs, net banking frauds, ATM/Debit card incidents or cases of unauthorized access to bank servers. Hence, there is an immediate need for plugging all the gaps and vulnerabilities in tech-enabled service delivery," says Mundra.

Currently, portability of bank account numbers does not exist in any country worldwide.

In India, mobile users can port their numbers from one service provider to another, while the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India is mulling on the option of their clients switching from one insurer to another, retaining their policies.

The challenege RBI faces to implement this concept in the future with over 388 million savings bank accounts and 28.3 million current accounts in the country could be a mamoth task ahead.

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