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IFAs face liability threat on DBS-Cofunds&#39 deal

DBS and Cofunds have hit a stumbling block over their

proposed link-up after the network discovered IFAs will be liable for any damage to the supermarket caused by computer viruses.

DBS-owned portal Assureweb announced its intention to link up with Cofunds in February but before signing a

deal it found a clause in the contract which made IFAs responsible for viruses affecting

the supermarket.

The clause says there is no limitation to liability, leaving smaller IFAs facing potentially massive bills through no fault of their own.

Assureweb is in talks with Cofunds to resolve the issue

of liability.

Towry Law, which recently announced it is signing up with Cofunds, is also negotiating this issue.

The dispute means thousands of potential Cofunds users have been unable to use the supermarket for much of the Isa season.

Cofunds chief executive Sam Jenson says: “This specific clause is not that important. We do have high levels of security in place. We have a standard contract which everyone negotiates upon. It is not a deal breaker.”

DBS spokeswoman Sue Lewis says: “Cofunds and DBS are both talking and trying to see how best we can move this thing forward.

“We want to get Cofunds up and running on Assureweb as soon as possible but we do want to ensure all par-ties are protected, particularly our own members.”

Roberts Clark director Ashley Clark says: “It is Cofunds&#39 duty to virus protect their site. If a client, or even someone who has just come on to my site who I am completely unaware of, goes from my site to Cofunds and transmits a virus by accident, it is unacceptable that I should be liable.

Cofunds should have a duty to protect their own site. I would prefer not to deal with them on this basis.”

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