The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority announced Thursday a multi-pronged plan to overhaul its registration and disclosure programs, including its Central Registration Depository — the “backbone” of BrokerCheck — with the first phase being a new WebCRD interface.
The new interface, which goes into effect on June 30, is one in a series of changes that FINRA plans to make to the CRD system in order to “increase the utility and efficiency of the registration and disclosure process for firms, investors and regulators, as well as to reduce compliance costs for firms.”
FINRA said that it expects those changes to be complete in 2021.
Brad Bennett, former head of FINRA’s enforcement division, told ThinkAdvisor Thursday that the initiative “will solidify BrokerCheck as the gold standard for disclosure on registered firms and representatives, and should provide significant efficiencies for FINRA’s member firms.”
WebCRD, Bennett explained, “is only accessible by firms and regulators as it is designed to facilitate the processing of form filings, fingerprints, qualification exams and continuing education.”
FINRA’s new WebCRD interface is designed “to give more immediate responses to firms about potential red flags in their submissions,” Bennett said.