12 CFR § 7.5002 - Furnishing of products and services by electronic means and facilities.

§ 7.5002 Furnishing of products and services by electronic means and facilities.

(a) Use of electronic means and facilities. A national bank may perform, provide, or deliver through electronic means and facilities any activity, function, product, or service that it is otherwise authorized to perform, provide, or deliver, subject to § 7.5001(b) and applicable OCC guidance. The following list provides examples of permissible activities under this authority. This list is illustrative and not exclusive; the OCC may determine that other activities are permissible pursuant to this authority.

(1) Acting as an electronic finder by:

(i) Establishing, registering, and hosting commercially enabled web sites in the name of sellers;

(ii) Establishing hyperlinks between the bank's site and a third-party site, including acting as a “virtual mall” by providing a collection of links to web sites of third-party vendors, organized by-product type and made available to bank customers;

(iii) Hosting an electronic marketplace on the bank's Internet web site by providing links to the web sites of third-party buyers or sellers through the use of hypertext or other similar means;

(iv) Hosting on the bank's servers the Internet web site of:

(A) A buyer or seller that provides information concerning the hosted party and the products or services offered or sought and allows the submission of interest, bids, offers, orders and confirmations relating to such products or services; or

(B) A governmental entity that provides information concerning the services or benefits made available by the governmental entity, assists persons in completing applications to receive such services or benefits and permits persons to transmit their applications for such services or benefits;

(v) Operating an Internet web site that permits numerous buyers and sellers to exchange information concerning the products and services that they are willing to purchase or sell, locate potential counter-parties for transactions, aggregate orders for goods or services with those made by other parties, and enter into transactions between themselves;

(vi) Operating a telephone call center that provides permissible finder services; and

(vii) Providing electronic communications services relating to all aspects of transactions between buyers and sellers;

(2) Providing electronic bill presentment services;

(3) Offering electronic stored value systems;

(4) Safekeeping for personal information or valuable confidential trade or business information, such as encryption keys; and

(5) Issuing electronic letters of credit within the scope of 12 CFR 7.1016.

(b) Applicability of guidance and requirements not affected. When a national bank performs, provides, or delivers through electronic means and facilities an activity, function, product, or service that it is otherwise authorized to perform, provide, or deliver, the electronic activity is not exempt from the regulatory requirements and supervisory guidance that the OCC would apply if the activity were conducted by non-electronic means or facilities.

(c) State laws. As a general rule, and except as provided by Federal law, State law is not applicable to a national bank's conduct of an authorized activity through electronic means or facilities if the State law, as applied to the activity, would be preempted pursuant to traditional principles of Federal preemption derived from the Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution and applicable judicial precedent. Accordingly, State laws that stand as an obstacle to the ability of national banks to exercise uniformly their Federally authorized powers through electronic means or facilities, are not applicable to national banks.

[61 FR 4862, Feb. 9, 1996, as amended at 73 FR 22242, Apr. 24, 2008]