The fair, clear and not misleading rule applies in a way that is appropriate and proportionate taking into account the means of communication and the information that it is intended to convey. So a communication addressed to a banking customer, a payment service customer or an electronic money customer4 who is not a consumer may not need to include the same information, or be presented in the same way, as a communication addressed to a consumer.
The rules in SYSC 3 (Systems and Controls) and SYSC 4 (General organisational requirements) require a firm to put in place systems and controls or policies and procedures in order to comply with the rules in COBS 4.6 (Past, simulated past and future performance), COBS 4.7.1 R (Direct offer financial promotions), COBS 4.10 (Systems and controls and approving and communicating financial promotions) and this chapter of BCOBS.
Part 7 (Offences relating to Financial Services) of the Financial Services Act 2012 create criminal offences relating to certain misleading statements and practices.
1A communication, financial promotion or payment service or electronic money promotion4 should not describe a feature of a product or service as "guaranteed", "protected" or "secure", or use a similar term unless:
4A communication, or payment service or electronic money promotion relating to a currency transfer service is likely to be misleading if it presents an exchange rate in a way that is likely to give the impression that the rate is available to a person or a class of persons if that rate is unlikely to be obtained by that person or class of persons with respect to a typical transaction.