The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has announced that the implementation of the Secure Customer Authentication (SCA) rules has been delayed by 18 months. It is reportedly due to the recent opinion published by the European Banking Authority which details concerns regarding the preparedness of businesses. 

SCA is a new European requirement to make online transactions more secure with the aim to reduce fraud. The new rules require higher value transactions to be authorised by at least to factors of authentication e.g. the user enters a password on their computer and confirms from their phone. 

The originally proposed deadline of September 14th was expected to cause considerable disruption and risked online payments failing. The delay was seen as good news by Andrew Cregan, Payments Policy Advisor for the British Retail Consortium, who said “The decision by the FCA avoids a payments cliff-edge, whereby 25-30% of e-commerce transactions made online after 14th September would have been at risk of failing as a result of the new laws. The 18 month, phased implementation of Strong Customer Authentication should allow retailers and banks time to put in place the necessary technical fixes required, and minimise any disruption in online transactions.”