THE BANGKO SENTRAL ng Pilipinas (BSP) told banks and other financial institutions to stop making transactions with the social media platform LYKA as it remains unregistered as an operator of payment system (OPS).

BSP Deputy Governor Mamerto E. Tangonan issued Circular Letter No. CL-2021-060 dated July 27 informing BSP-supervised financial institutions of its previous directive to LYKA or Things I Like Co., Ltd. to stop from operating as a payment system in the country.

Banks and other financial institutions should only deal with registered OPS and nonbank electronic money issuers, the BSP said.

The Monetary Board last week ordered LYKA to suspend its payment system activities, saying it has not registered as an OPS with the central bank.

It also asked Digital Spring Marketing and Advertising, Inc. to stop providing LYKA its cash-in service, merchant accreditation and settlement process, among others, while the platform is not yet registered with the BSP. The regulator also canceled the provisional registration of Digital Spring.

LYKA is a social media platform by a Hong Kong-based company granting users rewards through gift cards in electronic mode or GEMs based on the number of activities or posts they like and share. These GEMs can then be used to pay for goods and services in partner stores.

The BSP earlier said the platform has expressed willingness to register with the regulator.

BSP Circular 1049 requires all OPS to register with the central bank as provided under

Republic Act No. 11127 or the National Payment Systems Act mandates all OPS to register with the BSP before they can operate. Examples of OPS include cash-in providers, merchant acquirers, payment facilitators, payment gateways, platform providers, bills payment service providers and other entities facilitating payments for goods and services. — B.M. Laforga