The UK Government has formally launched a ‘call for evidence’ on the benefits of greater data sharing and use of open data in banking, as part of moves to support the growth of Britain’s emerging fintech sector and deliver better deals for customers. As part of the call for evidence, the Government is setting out its aim to create a freely-accessible standard for developing software that enables customers to share their bank data with other products or services they use. By creating an open standard for developing APIs, the Government wants to encourage more banks and fintech firms to work together to devise new ways to use bank data that benefit customers.
As an example, it cites the use of a smartphone app which links the customer’s GPS data and banking information to provide advice on what products or services that customer may like to buy in any given area. This could include advice on whether or not they could buy a cheaper coffee, or to forgo it altogether if they have exceeded their pre-set budget for that month.
City Minister Andrea Leadsom says: “Key to our long term economic plan is making Britain the global centre for financial technology, or fintech, and innovation. Making it easier for customers to use their data in more effective or creative ways can help achieve this, and we think the benefits and opportunities for customers could be huge.”
The Government is calling for views from a wide range of sources including the public, fintech firms, app designers, as well as the financial services industry during the four-week consultation period.