Redhawk Wealth Advisors now allows advisors to text message clients using MyRepChat, a communication platform that provides compliant business texting.
Regulators have classified text messaging as a form of electronic communication requiring supervision and retention. Regulators have noted in the context of addressing the supervision and recordkeeping requirements for text messaging that a Firm's obligation to supervise electronic communications is based on the content and audience of the message, not the electronic form of the communication. It is clear that text messages are not exempt from the requirements despite the challenges associated with supervision and retention.
Given the position on text messaging, along with the logistical challenges of supervising and archiving text messages, Redhawk's policy is to allow its IARs to use text messaging as a means to communicate business related information, subject to the policies within the Compliance Manual's Electronic Communications section, relating to its use. All texts will be archived in Smarsh. Please review the policy and procedures below.
- • All communications via text message must go through the MyRepChat website or mobile app.
- • All advisors must create a MyRepChat account, even if you do not intend to exchange text messages with clients. Your MyRepChat account must be set up so Redhawk can ensure that each advisor can utilize the new texting policy if the need arises. For example, even if you do not communicate with clients via texts, you could still receive a text from a client. With your MyRepChat account already set up, you could compliantly respond from your compliance approved business number via text.
- • All text messages must be received and sent by the business phone number set up in your MyRepChat account.
- • The email address used for your MyRepChat account must be the email that is monitored and archived in Smarsh. If you are unsure which email is linked to Smarsh, please reach out to Redhawk Compliance.
- • If a client texts you on your personal phone number, you must direct them to your new business number that can be used for texting. When you respond, either call the client or send a message from your MyRepChat number. Do not reply to the text message by texting from your personal mobile number.
- • If a client is also a family member or friend, your text messages about advisory business must be sent to and from your business number.
- • As with your business email address, your business texting number must be used for business purposes only. This is because personal texts (and emails) clog up the compliance review queue. Redhawk also does not want to have personal information archived or for review.
- • Do not request clients text you any sensitive, personal information, like their social security number. These details should still be collected over a phone call or in person.