A BRICS report has made a strong case for developing a safe digital architecture with a view to gain the trust of stakeholders and promote financial inclusion among the member nations.
India is the current chair of the BRICS.
In the Second BRICS Finance Ministers' and Central Bank Governors (FMCBG) Meeting held on August 26, 2021, the RBI tabled the 'Report on Digital Financial Inclusion in BRICS'; the e-Booklet on BRICS Information Security Regulations; and the Compendium of BRICS Best Practices on Information Security Risks: Supervision and Control. The reports were prepared by the respective teams of the BRICS central banks.
The report on 'Digital Financial Inclusion in BRICS', uploaded on the RBI website, notes that the COVID-19 pandemic has enhanced the focus on all aspects of digital financial inclusion.
There has been accelerated use of digital financial services mainly due to the relaxations and innovative approach adopted by the authorities, private players adopting the remote business and payment models and an increase in first-time consumers due to lockdown and social distancing protocols.
"While these are encouraging developments, the challenges of bridging the digital divide have got amplified.
"The risk of cyber incidents, online frauds, illicit financial flows and data privacy have come to the fore with increase in customer uptake as most of these technologies and platforms are relatively new and evolving," it said.
It further said that as the countries emerge from the pandemic, the digital financial system will have a crucial role to fulfil the aspirations and needs of our economies recovering from the pandemic.
At the same time, these new technologies must be designed and implemented with adequate safeguards so as not to exacerbate the risk of further marginalising the excluded section.
"Going ahead, the authorities have to focus on a robust and safe architecture to strengthen the trust of the stakeholders which will help in broadening the coverage and impact of digital financial inclusion," said the report.
The BRICS grouping comprises Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.
The e-booklet on Information Security Regulations and the Compendium of BRICS Best Practices on Information Security Risks covers information security regulations and best practices across the BRICS jurisdictions, with the objective of strengthening the cyber incidents management systems.
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