You’re on a call with a client and you’re in the process of closing a really important deal for your bank. It’s the type of engagement that requires a lot of back and forth communication and the client asks, “Can you just text me the information?”
As an experienced sales professional, you understand how important it is to accommodate the client whenever possible, especially when you’re on the hook for a lucrative deal. But you’re hesitant because SMS texting poses a few challenges when it comes to regulatory compliance and record keeping laws. But this deal is extremely critical and time is of the essence. You need to expedite this transaction in every way possible, so despite the risks associated with regulatory non-compliance and record keeping laws, you meet the client where he is and go along with the client’s request to communicate using SMS text messages.
This scenario plays out frequently and across many industries. Regulatory compliance can easily fall by the wayside when stress levels rise and a big, important deal is in the works. But these issues can lead to serious non-compliance challenges down the road, with companies confronting significant fines and penalties. The solution: an enterprise messaging platform with SMS text messaging capabilities and features that allow for full legal and regulatory compliance.
SMS Text Messaging Regulations and Challenges With Non-Compliance
SMS text messaging allows for easy communications with clients, colleagues and others whom you need to connect with in the course of your everyday business dealings. After all, everyone has a mobile device so texting represents an easy, straightforward option for communicating. But unfortunately, SMS messages can cause problems when it comes to a company’s regulatory compliance and compliance with record keeping laws.
The challenges associated with SMS messaging are multi-faceted.
- Text messages generally do not comply with privacy-related regulatory compliance requirements. SMS messages lack encryption and other features — such as notifications that display portions of the message on a mobile device’s lock screen — pose additional problems when it comes to compliance.
- There is no guarantee that text messaging data will be exported and preserved in a manner that complies with record keeping laws and the regulations that are set forth by industry-specific regulatory oversight groups. Mobile devices generally lack tools for exporting messaging data and an organization will likely need to go out of its way to export the messaging data in their attempts to achieve regulatory and legal compliance.
- SMS text message data falls outside of a company’s realm of control in most cases, especially when it comes to record keeping and data preservation. Even in the case of a company-owned mobile device, the user can easily delete a text message, which interferes with the company’s record keeping abilities. In short, this data can be easily lost, creating major issues with non-compliance fines and penalties.
- There are no moderation tools available for SMS texts on a standard platform such as Apple’s iMessage. This can present a challenge since companies are required to maintain an inclusive, professional digital environment for its employees.
There are several laws and regulations that specifically call for the preservation of SMS text message data. A few of these laws include the following.
- The Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX) applies to publicly-traded companies and one of the measures intended to improve transparency calls for the preservation of text messages for up to seven years with a “SMS archiving solution.”
- The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act requires financial institutions to preserve all communications with customers and clients — including SMS messages.
- The Gramm-Leach Bliley Act calls for the protection of customer data and one of the requirements requires financial institutions and investment firms to perform SMS archiving.
- Federal Acquisitions Regulations (FAR) apply to communications between the government and contractors who provide goods and services. Electronic communications such as SMS texts must be preserved for as long as four years.
Using a Business Messaging App With a SMS Texting Feature
Legal and regulatory compliance challenges with SMS messages are many and varied, especially in some of the more highly-regulated industries such as the financial sector and the health care space, which is subject to strict HIPAA regulations. But there is a solution and it comes in the form of a messaging app with in-built SMS text messaging capabilities.
Consumer-grade platforms such as iMessage have been associated with millions of dollars in fines and penalties for regulatory non-compliance and violations of record keeping laws. Take the case of nearly a dozen financial institutions which were fined a combined sum of nearly $2 billion dollars for using iMessage, WhatsApp and other non-compliant messaging platforms.
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) handed down $1.8 billion in fines after it was found the banks were allowing employees to communicate with clients using messaging platforms that lacked the tools and features that would allow for compliance with record keeping laws. iMessage and SMS texts were amongst the platforms involved in the violations with precedent-setting fines.
A business messaging app like SayHey Messenger® provides companies with the tools they need to leverage SMS texting for sales and communication purposes, while simultaneously avoiding non-compliance and legal challenges.
SayHey Messenger® allows for SMS text messaging data exports and data preservation in a manner that aligns with record keeping laws and regulations put forth by regulatory groups.
Minimizing Risk With a Business Messaging App
It’s clear the instant messaging represents a key area of concern in the risk management landscape. Many of these risks can be mitigated with the deployment of an instant messaging mobile app and desktop platform that’s specifically designed for business communications. That is precisely what SayHey Messenger® is designed to do.
SayHey Messenger® is a unique and regulatory-compliant business instant messaging platform that solves many of the challenges that companies face when it comes to communication. The team at 7T developed SayHey Messenger® as a method for patching the holes in your company’s messaging situation.
The SayHey Messenger® app features:
- Data sovereignty for control and ownership of all messaging data;
- Fully compliant instant messaging for regulated businesses;
- Seamlessly integrates into existing company software platforms;
- Admin portal for moderation, auditing, and inclusivity;
- SayHey Spaces for company-wide broadcasts and team collaborations;
- Engaging, intuitive user interface for incredible adoption rates;
- Send compliant SMS messages to external users with full data retention; and
- Custom UI with your logo, colors and branding elements for a style that’s all yours.
SayHey Messenger® offers two deployments: a SayHey Messenger® Business deployment with a mobile app platform (for iOS and Android) and web app portal. There’s also SayHey Messenger® Enterprise deployments, which entail storing all messaging data in the client’s private cloud environment and the platform is fully integrated within the client’s existing software platforms, including mobile applications. This allows users to access their instant messages without leaving the screen, leading to greater productivity, higher user adoption rates and better efficiency.
Consider using SayHey Messenger® as your business messaging platform. And the best part? We can deploy this business messaging solution in a matter of days. Contact us today to learn more about SayHey Messenger®.