Bank explains changes
All accounts opened at CIBC FirstCaribbean International Bank after 2007 are already signatory to announced changes to the financial institution’s relationship with customers.
According to a statement issued by the bank this afternoon correspondence about the changes was only sent to, and only applies to, those who opened accounts before 2007.
The changes include giving FirstCaribbean unilateral control over all applicable interest rates, fees, charges and overdraft limits; allowing the bank to share and process information on customer accounts outside of Barbados in its consolidated centres or with its third party processors and not holding the bank liable “by reason of any act, delay or omission of such CIBC FirstCaribbean Group member or any third party service provider in the performance of the services required of it”.
Customers have been given until December 31 to agree to the changes, which are subject to regulatory approval and are due to take effect in January.
If they do not consent to the adjustments, this could lead to immediate termination of their banking services by FirstCaribbean.
FirstCaribbean has sought to assure its customers that it “operates at the highest standards of security, and our customers can be assured that their information will be accessed by a highly trained, competent, workforce, which adheres to the highest standards of confidentiality”.
“Like any other responsible company, CIBC FirstCaribbean makes every reasonable effort to prevent unauthorized use, sharing, loss or theft of information,” it said.
Following is the bank’s full statement:
In light of the concerns expressed in sections of the media about correspondence sent to some of our customers, CIBC FirstCaribbean would like to provide some clarification to our customers.
The correspondence is designed to standardize all client mandates. All accounts opened after 2007 are already signatories to this agreement – the correspondence was sent to customers whose accounts were opened prior to 2007 and is designed to bring these account agreements up-to-date in line with the account mandate that has been signed by our customers who have opened accounts or accessed new services with the bank after January 2007.
It is important to note that the letter is not a notice of any impending wide scale changes to fees or interest rates, but speaks generally to the possibility of future changes. Our fees are reviewed at intervals and are adjusted – upwards or downwards – in line with a number of conditions within a particular jurisdiction. Should there be an adjustment to any fees or rates in the future, this would of course be done with the appropriate notice to both our regulators and our customers, as is customary.
The change in our approach to processing our data within consolidated centers, which was approved by our regulators, is necessary to improve our efficiency in delivering quality banking services to our valued customers. There is no change to the way our customers operate or access their accounts. Their funds remain accessible through the usual customer channels such as the branches, internet and telephone banking and our network of ABMs.
Centralized processing of client transactions, including through third parties, is standard across financial institutions and other companies, both inside the Caribbean and beyond.
We’d like to give our customers the assurance that CIBC FirstCaribbean operates at the highest standards of security, and our customers can be assured that their information will be accessed by a highly trained, competent, workforce, which adheres to the highest standards of confidentiality.
Like any other responsible company, CIBC FirstCaribbean makes every reasonable effort to prevent unauthorized use, sharing, loss or theft of information. Employees who have access to customer information are made aware of the importance of keeping it confidential, and where we use service providers we select them carefully and require them to have privacy and security standards that meet our strict requirements.