For failing to comply with data storage requirements, the Reserve Bank of India on Wednesday indefinitely stopped the US-based Mastercard from issuing new credit, debit, and prepaid cards with effect from July 22.
After American Express Banking Corp and Diners Club International, Mastercard, a major card issuing firm in the country, has been stopped by RBI from soliciting new users over a data storage concern.
“From July 22, 2021, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has put limits on Mastercard Asia/Pacific Pte. Ltd. (Mastercard) onboarding new domestic consumers (debit, credit, or prepaid) onto its card network,” according to a statement from the central bank.
The RBI, however, clarified that its supervisory action will not affect the services of Mastercard’s existing customers in the country.
In announcing the ban on Mastercard, the RBI stated that “despite the passage of considerable time and the provision of adequate opportunities, the entity has been found to be non-compliant with the directions on Storage of Payment System Data.”
Under the Payment and Settlement Systems Act of 2007, Mastercard is a payment system operator authorised to operate a card network in the country (PSS Act).
According to the RBI’s circular on Storage of Payment System Data issued on April 6, 2018, all system providers were directed to ensure that all payment system data is stored only in India within six months.
They were also required to report compliance to RBI and submit a board-approved System Audit Report conducted by a CERT-In accredited auditor within certain timeframes.