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Mastercard claiming compliance with RBI norms, begins deleting transactions data stored overseas


The global payment giant Mastercard has started the process of wiping out data related to Indian transactions stored overseas in compliance with the RBI directive on data localisation. It has also started storing all the domestic data on the Indian soil.

The Reserve Bank of India had set a deadline of October 2018 by which all global payment companies were asked to store transaction data of Indian customers in the country. On the request of the global firms, it had further extended the deadline.

Mastercard said the process of deleting the overseas data of Indian transactions shall be completed by the year-end.

Vikas Varma, senior vice-president (account management, South Asia) at Mastercard was quoted as saying in the Business Standard report that though RBI has not given any deadline yet, the company has already started the process of data localisation.

Since RBI has clearly asked for data residency with “no mirror” clause, the company has gone a step ahead and is setting up a data processing center in Pune. The center will entail an investment of around $350 million out of its planned investment of around $1 billion in the next five years, the Mastercard official said.

Currently, the processing capability of Mastercard is in the US. India will be the second such center in the world for the company.

The American technology giant, in tune with times, is striving to change from a card-based company to a universal payments provider. It is increasingly facing competition from other payment services providers and new-age fintech firms.

Significantly, the Indian Finance Minister in Facebook post had said that Visa and Mastercard are losing market share in India to the payment system of UPI and RuPay Card, whose share have reached 65 per cent of the payments done through debit and credit cards.

Though competition from digital payment companies has brought in pricing pressure for all industry players, the company said it plans to counter it through scale.

It has also not ruled out investment in some fintech firms in coming months.

Not be left behind in the race,  Mastercard is also all set to join the National Common Mobility Card (NCMC) scheme. The ‘One Nation One Card’ programme of the government is meant to promote digital transactions for payments across bus, metro and other transit modes. It is in talks with around 15 banks for signing up on NCMC.

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