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Amazon India’s UPI payments service launch hampered by data norms

Amazon India’s plan to launch its own Unified Payments Interface (UPI)-based payments service has been hampered owing to RBI's concerns regarding the storage of user data in India. The e-commerce giant is reportedly waiting for more clarity on the norms from the central bank. Amazon is also concerned regarding the recently drafted Data Protection Bill and the laws pertaining to it. The development was first reported by the Economic Times. In April, the RBI mandated that all payments system operators working in India needed to ensure that the data related to operating payment systems be stored in the country. This move could come into effect from October 15 this year, but there is uncertainty over its implementation due to the Data Protection Bill, 2018. A draft of this bill was submitted to the government last week and it overrides all sectorial regulators and all their directives. The bill requires all data fiduciaries to store a copy of users’ personal data and mandatory storage of ‘critical personal data’ within India only. The bill has, however, failed to explicitly define ‘critical data’. Implementing the RBI’s directive would come as a strong blow for foreign companies operating in India. Not only would it cost these companies in setting up local data centres, but it may also not be allowed by regulations in their home countries. Currently, such companies also fear that the central bank’s move could set a precedent for other countries to implement similar rules.  While foreign firms have been lobbying strongly to ease the central bank’s regulation, their…

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