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New regulations to enhance protection of consumers' information (2)

By Xu Wei  (China Daily)

08:52, January 30, 2013

The regulation also stated that providers of information to credit reference agencies will also be fined if the information he or she provides caused a major problem.

China's credit reference market has begun to take shape in recent years, and the industry is lacking a universal standard and guidelines for supervisors, according to a statement released by the State Council's Legislative Affairs Office and the People's Bank of China.

Inside the industry, there has been inappropriate behavior, such as collecting the personal information of consumers through inappropriate means, or putting the information to illegal use.

It was also difficult to collect information of market entities at times, the statement said.

The regulation also set the bar for the industry, as it requires credit reference agencies to have a registered capital of 50 million yuan and major shareholders must have no criminal record from the last three years.

The regulation would apply to agencies that collect, compile and keep personal information and provide the information to users within Chinese territory. The PBOC and its outlets are the major supervisors of the industry.

It has become increasingly common for banks to collect clients' personal information by mistake or try to inquire about their personal information through illegal means, said Pan Gongsheng, deputy governor of the central bank, in a work conference on the credit reference of commercial banks earlier this month.

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