It will no longer be business as usual for violators of Bank Verification Number (BVN). They have been barred from opening new bank accounts going by a fresh Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) rule.
The new policy is contained in a Revised Regulatory Framework for Bank Verification Number (BVN) operations and Watch-List for the banking industry released by the apex bank in its Update Report circular.
According to the bank, the new framework has been designed to enhance the effectiveness of customer due diligence and Know Your Customer (KYC) processes.
The CBN described the policy as part of its overall strategy for promoting a safe and efficient banking and payment system.
In the circular, the Director, Payments System Management Department, Musa Jimoh, explained that the watch-list is a database of customers identified by their BVNs, who have been involved in confirmed cases of breaches.
He explained that under the new framework, breaches on the part of customer could see the individual getting barred from entering a new relationship with any participant (banks).
Musa said that where a financial institution chooses to continue an existing business relationship with holders of an account/wallets on the watch-list, the account holder shall be prohibited from all electronic channels such as but not limited to Automated Teller Machine, Point of Sale , Internet Banking, Mobile Banking, USSD including the issuance of third- party cheques.
He said: “The new framework further stipulates that a customer with watch-listed BVN shall not reference accounts, access or guarantee credit facilities, thus, breaches it continued on the customer’s part include – use of forged documents, forgery, compromise, complicity and connivance.