E-rules could harm UK

Intermediaries and lenders that offer mortgage products online have been left on tenterhooks as they wait to see what the full impact of the Electronic Commerce Regulations 2002 will be.

New rules came into force last week and incorporate the Electronic Commerce Directive 2000 into UK law, covering the provision of services offered at a distance by electronic means.

Information Society Services will be regulated on a &#39country of origin&#39 principle.

A top-level memo from the CML seen by Mortgage Strategy conveys lenders&#39 worst fears. In its response to the Treasury&#39s first mortgage consultation, the CML expressed concern that ISS providers from member states with less stringent financial regulation than the UK would have a competitive edge over UK firms.