ASIC has reminded financial institutions of the prohibition in Section 12DL of the Australian Securities and Investments Commission Act 2001 (Cth) (ASIC Act) against the sending of unsolicited credit and debit cards by annnouncing the terms of National Australia Bank's response to ASIC's concerns with National Australia Bank (NAB)'s distribution of American Express credit cards as ‘companion’ cards to NAB Qantas Gold account customers. ASIC was concerned that the distribution was unsolicited and potentially in breach of section 12DL .
ASIC was concerned because the distribution of American Express cards was not made in response to a request in writing from customers, and involved the sending of a companion card to its Qantas Gold Card which was an additional card, and not a card sent in renewal, replacement or substitution of an existing card.
In response to ASIC’s concerns, NAB is writing to all of its Qantas Gold account customers. NAB will either give customers who have already used the companion cards the choice not to retain the card (via an opt-out process) or give customers who have not used the companion cards the opportunity to confirm that they wish to retain the card in writing (via an opt-in process), otherwise the companion card will be automatically deactivated.
In both instances, customers’ NAB Qantas Gold accounts will remain open and their Qantas Gold MasterCards or Visa cards will continue to work.