Why Vulnerability Matters And Why You Should Invest In Recognising Vulnerable Customers And Making Reasonable Adjustments
- 04 May 2022
Why Vulnerability Matters
Supporting customers who find themselves in vulnerable circumstances is now a priority for many organisations and the regulators that oversee them. Regulators who have declared an interest in this area include the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), The Fundraising Regulator, OFGEM and OFCOM as well as a concern of the Information Commissioners Office (ICO).
In some sectors regulators have already issued guidance on their expectations and clearly stated that they will be overseeing activity whilst applying a ‘vulnerability lens’. It’s clear that the FCA is planning to go even further than the guidance published back in February 2021, as they’re now well into a consultation on Consumer Duty. In other sectors, professional membership bodies have launched charters or commitments that they want their members to sign up to. The UK’s DMA (Data and Marketing Association) even has vulnerability under its Responsible Marketing pillar and runs Masterclasses for members and non-members under the training arm of the IDM (see link below for booking details).
This is clearly an issue that is being taken seriously with substantial fines already issued to firms who have not served their vulnerable customers fairly. In March ’22 the ICO alone issued fines totalling £405,000 to five companies for making over 750,000 unwanted marketing calls which were targeting older, vulnerable people.