Consumers who have suffered financial harm will be compensated quicker through the Financial Conduct Authority's (FCA's) enforcement process.
In a paper released this morning, the regulator said enforcement would play a key role in its desire to identify potential problems at an earlier stage - and take steps to avert them.
Journey to the FCA said the watchdog would act where it considered "that particular aspects of a firm's business model or culture - such as its product selection, training and recruitment or remuneration practices - are likely to harm consumers".
It also promised to put more emphasis, at an earlier stage, "on securing redress where consumers have suffered harm".
It said the new approach had already begun at the Financial Services Authority (FSA) with the current regulator taking successful, faster action in cases of suspicious market activity through closer cooperation between the enforcement and market monitoring teams.
The paper added: "While we will continue to rely on our enforcement work to help deliver clean markets and combat market abuse, we will aim to help combat fraud in the financial sector by working closely with other law enforcement agencies.
"To do all of this, we will use the full range of our enforcement powers, which include the ability to fine, suspend, prohibit, seek injunctions, order compensation to be paid and bring criminal prosecutions."
Where firms are dual-regulated the FCA will consult with the PRA before embarking on joint or separate investigations.
It also said its investigations and enforcement actions would be more transparent.
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