Open Banking: Mastering privacy & consent  to unlock the personal data superpower

Open banking: Whereas initially seen as a way to enable exchanges between financial institutions, it is now spreading faster and even beyond expectations.

Once upon a time we used to think of banking as private safes and white collars. Today, it is certainly one of the most promising areas for data-driven innovation. Each time a user pays online, it leaves behind a digital trail of information, allowing for infinite data-fueled possibilities. Yet just like banknotes, personal financial data needs to be kept safely. This means in this case: in compliance with the GDPR, Swiss DPA or any other relevant data protection regulation. 

Open Banking: Mastering privacy & consent  to unlock the personal data superpower

The growth of personal data usage is exponential and affects almost any industry. On one side of this growth, there are the users who keep calling for more on-click personalised offerings and “fluidity” of data transfer. On the other, businesses that are striving to deliver on these demands in the best possible way. Some of these businesses, however, are just kicking off in the personal data economy services accessing. This has been core for the banks and financial industries.

Banks online & payments: guardians of trust

While the pandemic casted a harsh light on the notion of personal data collection and privacy respect, it also further strengthened the boost towards contactless and online paying services. Unlike other industries operating with personal data, the banking industry is fortunate to be one step ahead when it comes to trust: people trust banks and other financial entities to safeguard their personal data more than other organizations. Perhaps for this reason, digital banks and mobile financial applications have been growing like weeds in the past few years; trust being the “magic” seed of their super-fast expansion.

« Bank 4.0: banking everywhere. Never at a bank »

As banking services are being digitized, paying cash is becoming a thing of the past. Twint, Revolut and other “one-click” solutions are becoming the new way to pay for anything, anywhere. And online banking apps are the new go-to for managing bank accounts anytime, “stay home”-compliant and safe. So, if banks were long seen as closed physical places with thick walls and locked doors, they are now becoming prime actors of the rising personal data economy. A rise reinforced by the recent introduction of Open Banking: a practice that provides third-party service providers open access to consumer banking transactions and financial data through the use of application programming interfaces (APIs).

Open Banking Poker Face: Superhero or Supervillain?

Open banking introduces a new paradigm that opens up many business opportunities. Whereas initially seen as a way to enable exchanges between financial institutions, it is now spreading faster and even beyond expectations. Unforeseen personal data offerings in a cross-industry corporation arise indeed when personal and financial data is derived and aggregated. And in a world where everything can be bought a click away, derived applications are endless. 

Applications, “Sur-mesure”.

Just to mention a few, service providers already suggest personalized offerings based on correlating financial and personal data, like targeted budgets for monthly shopping, savings and loans. Thanks to the data collected through open banking, the app can be made perfect for any user: depending on the stage of your life whether you are a student, a parent, buying property or planning retirement, it will provide you with an offer which suits you best.

Privacy-first (un)locks Open Banking

Still, if Open banking is great for business, it is also referred to as a nightmare when it comes to privacy. Especially, the system raises questions as regards to the privacy of the users whose data is being shared: do they understand what their data is being used for? Are they given the opportunity to give explicit consent as required by the GDPR? To ensure that open banking will benefit the users and not foster discrimination, strong safeguards have to be put in place.

Solution: Beyond secrecy, use personal data and consent management solution to enhance your users privacy.

“Personal data aggregation, sharing and processing should be as effective, secure and trustworthy as online banking.”Pryv

If one could argue that not sharing any data would be the best solution to ensure users privacy, we beg to disagree: Privacy doesn’t have to be only secrecy. At Pryv, we envision a world where privacy is the ability to share personal data with awareness, trust and control.

“Giving explicit consent to collect and share personal data has per core requirement that users understand which data we are talking about. Trust comes with the ability to check the content of these data and the exchanges between all parties. Like banks that provide detailed reports of all transactions in time, classified in bank accounts” – Pierre-Mikael Legris, CEO of Pryv

Enhancing trust requires rethinking consent. In this new paradigm, privacy is not a compliance tick box but an opportunity to break data silos, differentiate products and services, and attract end-users with trust, transparency and empowerment.

“ data model provides all data in “time series” contextualised and classified in streams. It is designed to provide the same readability and transparency as your bank report. So anyone could make decisions and check its execution with a minimum of effort.”

Beat the “get-user-consent” fear: start managing your users’ data exactly as the bank manages your money! Learn more about how can help you win users’ trust by collecting and using their personal data rightly.

Stephanie & Evelina

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