Mastercard in India banned by RBI from issuing new cards

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Starting next Thursday, the company will be banned from issuing new debit, credit or prepaid cards, according to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). He did not say how long the restrictions would last.

In a statement on Wednesday, the central bank said that MasterCard (MY) had been given “considerable time and adequate opportunities” to comply with a mandate announced in 2018.

This measure obliges all payment providers to store data on Indian users and transactions only on local servers. The companies then had six months to comply with the mandate.

The RBI did not immediately respond to a request for comment on why its action against Mastercard was now coming.

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In its order on Wednesday, the RBI said Mastercard should order all card-issuing banks to “comply” with the new restrictions.

The move will not impact the company’s existing customers.

In response to a query from CNN Business, Mastercard declined to share its number of users in the country.

But he stressed that “there was no impact on our current operations in India”, and said the company “is fully committed to our legal and regulatory obligations in the markets in which we operate”.

Mastercard added that it had “worked closely” with the central bank for the past three years to comply with the requirements.

“Although we are disappointed with the position taken (…) we will continue to work with them and provide any additional details necessary to resolve their concerns,” he said.

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This is not the first time that India has imposed such restrictions.

In April, the RBI placed similar restrictions on American Express (AXP) on the same problem.
American Express said at the time that it had been “in regular dialogue” with Indian authorities and “demonstrated our progress towards compliance with the regulations.”

The company told CNN Business that there was “no update” to its statement on Thursday.

Data privacy concerns are on the rise around the world, putting increased pressure on businesses to store their data locally.

In China, You’re here (TSLA) recently set up a new facility to store local user information as the automaker faced scrutiny over whether its cars could one day be used for espionage.
China’s extraordinary crackdown on Didi, meanwhile, has focused on allegations that the rideshare company mishandled sensitive data about its users in China.

– Diksha Madhok contributed to this report.

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