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If you don’t already know what Open Banking is, you should, because it affects every single person who maintains an account at any one of the nine biggest banks in the United Kingdom. The general idea of Open Banking is that the major banks are forced to allow authorized companies to access their data in order to streamline the customers’ process. On January 13th, 2018, the process of launching Open Banking began, dubbed “managed roll out”. During this time, startups applied to the FCA in order to obtain permission to access the data that will eventually be provided by Open Banking. Then, on April 17th, this phase ended and now approved companies were allowed to offer Open Banking services to their consumers.

Obviously, one of the main concerns is safety, but the Financial Services Authority has vetted all of the companies with access to the bank data, and have assured the public that it is as safe or safer than online banking. Also, if anyone feels uncomfortable with their data being shared, they can simply opt out of the program and keep it private.

How will this affect you? There is no way for the banks to release your data without your explicit approval, so if you haven’t given it yet then it is potentially something to look into. If you have a small business, this should help you because you can now work with companies that have access to extraordinary amounts of banking data. Furthermore, this will allow SMEs the ability to take out loans much more easily, as they will have a simple, accessible online record of your balance sheet.

To hear more about Fintech, and other Open Banking related news items, come to our event on July 25th and listen to our panel of experts speak!