In a letter to the chair of Parliament’s Treasury Committee, Nicky Morgan MP, seen by Financial Planning Today, Mr Bailey pledged to improve the Register and acknowledged inaccurate and out of date information was on it.
He was responding to comments the MP had made about such issues in a national newspaper article.
Mr Bailey wrote: “While the Register has undoubtedly helped consumers and firms and prevented harm there have been instances when information displayed on the Register has been out of date, for example, as a result of a change in circumstances at a firm.
“One of my concerns after becoming CEO has been that we overhaul the Register and make it fit for the now larger remit of the FCA.”
Mr Bailey said new rules and possible fines and enforcement action would be put in place to ensure firms’ details were kept accurate and up to date.
He wrote: “We are also intending to put in place a series of safeguards to ensure the accuracy of the data on the Directory.
“There would be clear instructions and data validations to help submitting firms minimise the inclusion of erroneous data from the outset.
“New reporting rules would mean the FCA could take all appropriate action against firms to ensure they meet their obligations to keep their information up to date, including levying fees or taking enforcement action.
“The Senior Manager, responsible for certifying their staff under the SM&CR, would also be responsible for the accuracy of the data provided to the FCA about those individuals.
“Firms will need to confirm the accuracy of the data where it has not been updated in the last 12 months.
“Where an adviser is subject to a prohibition or other regulatory sanction, this information will be included on the Directory.
“The FCA also retains the ability to intervene directly to resolve errors.”
He said stopping consumers being duped by firms or people who had been banned or sanctioned was a priority.
“One of our aims is to identify those individuals who have been sanctioned or prohibited by the FCA or who are no longer considered to be fit and proper by their firms,” he added.
“These individuals will be clearly marked in the information we make available about individuals to enable them to be easily identifiable.
“This will help protect consumers when deciding with whom to do business and prospective employers when making their recruitment decisions, helping to tackle the problems around ‘rolling-bad apples’.”