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WhatsApp only mirroring payments data not fully complying with regulations: NPCI officials 


While cloud around WhatsApp Pay launch seemed to have got over as it recently announced local system to store data in India, NPCI officials believe that it’s not fully complied with regulations.

Citing NPCI officials, an ET report disclosed that the Facebook-owned company is only mirroring or copying data in India. However, RBI had strictly warned that all data related to payments must be stored in India and data mirroring or copying wouldn’t help foreign entities to come out of the mandatory norms.

Since the RBI’s deadline ended on 15th October, the debate over the extension and penalising has been going on. MasterCard, Visa and Google have demanded for the extension of mandatory data localisation rules by a 12 months period.

While many offshore payments firms have failed to meet the last date, WhatsApp was the only outside company to have complied with the guidelines. But, NPCI is not convinced with the compliance as it’s in bits and pieces.

According to NPCI officials, WhatsApp only announced to set up systems to store data locally but did not come clear whether the payments data is being kept in India or outside.

The incomplete compliance raise serious concern from NPCI amidst WhatsApp efforts in meeting stipulated guidelines. Since February, it has been trying to launch its payments service in India and seeking approval from regulators including RBI, Meity, and NPCI.

WhatsApp UPI is currently in beta mode and recently hired Komal Lahiri as local grievance officer after receiving flak from the Supreme Court. Further, it has been looking to hire India head for its payments operations in the country.

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