Spring has officially sprung – and with that the coats are being packed, flowers are budding, and moods are brightening. It's the perfect time to take stock – and to look forward. So, here's a quick round-up of our recent activities, some industry news, and a few developments that we think will be of interest to you, our valued Credit Bureau Association stakeholder.
This is a just small selection of what's keeping us occupied. We'd also love to hear from you: What are your big goals for the last quarter of 2016? What are your previous big wins? Get in touch with us, especially if you'd like us to share these with the broader credit information community.
What's been keeping us busy
Some of the biggest news in the industry at the moment is that, after some initial delays, the National Assembly voted for Pansy Tlakula to chair the Information Regulator earlier this month. Ms Tlakula is a former Independent Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) chairperson. The Portfolio Committee on Justice and Correctional Services also recommended Johannes Weapond and Cordelia Stroom as full-time members of the Information Regulator, and Professor Tana Pistorius and Mr Sizwe Snail as part-time appointees. Parliament voted for the five nominated candidates who will now be referred to the Minister of Justice and Correctional Services for confirmation.
Their first order of business is likely to be a date for the commencement of the PoPI Act. Writing about the developments, Sicelo Kula on the Michalson's website argues "Maybe the commencement date should be 24 May 2017, so that the end of the one-year PoPI grace period (24 May 2018) can coincide with the end of the General Data Protection Regulation's (GDPR) own grace period on the 24 May 2018". The CBA and its members continue our work in preparing for this.
In related news, we are also keeping up to date with progress and updates around both the Cybercrimes and Cybersecurity bill, and the Regulations to the amended Maintenance Bill. Furthermore, we are continuing our engagement with the NCR and SACRRA around the mandatory use of the Data Transmission Hub and the format for data submission by data providers to credit bureau as allowed for in regulation 19(13) of the NCA. We are hard at work on our policies and the necessary accommodations for these, and will update you on these projects as needed.
We also continue to work closely with the National Credit Regulator (NCR) around the on-going "Know your credit status" campaign. This fruitful joint campaign is entering its second year, and we were thrilled to see the appreciation for this key alliance is well reciprocated – with the campaign receiving mentions in the NCR annual report from both Minister of Trade and Industry Dr Rob Davies and NCR CEO Ms Nomsa Motshegare. Thank you to our friends at the NCR, DTI, and the DPSA for their partnership in this campaign.
Consumer education drive
In our last newsletter we sung the praises of one of our latest allies in our consumer education drive, UNISA. Shortly after sending that update, we hosted our first UNISA Credit Day with the Department of Mercantile Law. It was a huge success – with loads of staff and students in attendance, and many credit industry partners who joined us upstairs for a mini-seminar. We want to once again thank UNISA, and all of the speakers (such as representatives from the various bureaus and the Credit Ombud) who made time for us, and helped us make the day so worthwhile.
In terms of media outreach, our latest feature-style press release (providing advice to first-time home-buyers) has received great traction in the Gauteng community press. Additionally, we were recently invited to participate in a short interview with RSG and Moneyweb, on their prime-time slot Geldsake. We continue to steadily grow our profile as commentators in the credit and credit information space.
After consistent declines in all quarters of 2015, the latest CBM stats suggest a turnaround in free credit report requests. Long may it last!
The CBA has designed two infographics to guide the public on how to get their free credit reports and how to understand the data contained therein. Please feel free to check these out, and to link to or share them as you see fit.
Credit Bureau Association
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