The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has suggested that financial institutions get busy on implementing consumer protections for real-time and faster payments.
As the technology develops for making payments quicker, banks must be aware that they're still required to protect consumers from fraud, they can't gouge consumers on fees and high interest rates and they must be able to handle and fix their own errors.
As banks and credit union design systems to handle faster payments, consumer protections must be included in the initial designs, CFPB Richard Cordray said.
"Companies developing new financial technologies should be building systems from the outset with consumer protections in mind," Cordray said in a news release. "It is a lot easier to build something right from the start than it is to retrofit it."
In the set of principles that it released on Thursday, the CFPB emphasized opportunities for greater efficiency, such as having consumers view account information in real time and lowering transaction fees and costs.
The CFPB's guidelines touch on privacy, transparency, identity and security, consumer control, funds availability, fraud, error-resolution protections and payment system accessibility. The CFPB said that it will not specify how financial institutions meet its principles.
The Federal Reserve Board, Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, National Credit Union Administration and state regulators oversee payment networks, with a lean toward anti-money-laundering laws.