A circular sent out to all banks by Central Bank of Cyprus Governor Constantinos Herodotou calls on staff members to be friendly, patient and courteous with customers.
Insiders also told Phileleftheros that the recently sent circular underlines that it is essential for staff to receive sufficient training on how to professionally deal with clients.
And when necessary, the Governor wants staff to be able to explain to clients all bank procedures in detail, with patience and courtesy.
He then points out that when clients are thoroughly informed, then it will be easier for them to contribute positively towards regulatory compliance as well.
The reason the circular was sent out is, apparently, the numerous complaints the Central Bank had received regarding the way a recent customer data update process by commercial banks was carried out.
CBC has called on banks’ senior management staff to review procedures so as to ensure that these are customer-friendly.
The Governor also urged top executives to ensure that their employees conduct the due process with due diligence and respect towards customers.
The circular also called for warnings and time-frames provided to be in line with the legislative and regulatory framework aiming to prevent money laundering and terrorist financing.
At the same time, the Central Bank reminds banks that data updates should be carried out separately for each and every customer and not in the same, mass-production way.
And that employees should only collect information necessary for each case according to a customer’s profile and degree of risk.
Many citizens used social media to express their anger over the way banks were carrying out the updates, with some even pointing out that the same letter they had received was also sent to their underage children.