Month: February 2020

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FDATA North America Statement on Clearing House Purchase of Akoya

FDATA North America Statement on Clearing House Purchase of Akoya

Contact: Kerrie Rushton, (202) 365-6338, krushton@allonadvocacy.com

February 20, 2020, Washington, DC: Steve Boms, executive director of the Financial Data and Technology Association (FDATA) North America released the following statement regarding The Clearing House’s acquisition of Akoya:

“The Clearing House is a banking association and payments company that is owned by the world’s largest commercial banks. Its purchase of Akoya, a data aggregation firm founded by one of America’s largest investment firms, represents a significant potential threat to competition and innovation in financial services technology, as well as to consumers’ ability to obtain personalized financial services from providers they’ve selected as best suited to help them. If the new entity is allowed to consolidate and control consumer financial data, it will potentially prevent other third parties from accessing that data even if individuals and small businesses permission that access, by giving their consent for their data to be shared.

“Consumers’ and small businesses’ rights to access, use and control their financial data are threatened by this merger. FDATA North America and its members are committed to implementing consumer-centric open finance technology and services that promote financial inclusion and that improve the financial well-being of American families and small businesses. We believe this purchase will not advance either goal and serves only to underscore the need for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) to assert its authority under Section 1033 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act to promulgate a legal right for consumers and small businesses to control their financial data.” 


ABOUT FDATA NORTH AMERICA
FDATA was heavily involved in the UK Open Banking Working Group in 2015. In 2016, the working group’s output was published by Her Majesty’s Treasury as the Open Banking Standard. FDATA North America was founded in early 2018. Its members collectively provide tens of millions of consumers in Canada, the United States and Mexico with aggregation-based tools to better manage their finances. Existing FDATA North America members include: air (the Alliance for Innovative Regulation), Betterment, Envestnet Yodlee, FGS, Flinks, Intuit, Kabbage, Lendified, Mogo, Morningstsar, M Science, MX, Petal, Plaid, Questrade, Quicken Loans, Petal, Plaid, The ID Co., TransUnion, Trustly, VoPay, Wealthica and others.

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FDATA North America: Consumers and Small Businesses Lack Critical Access to Their Own Data Fields

FDATA North America: Consumers and Small Businesses Lack Critical Access to Their Own Data Fields

Contact: Kerrie Rushton, (202) 365-6338, krushton@allonadvocacy.com

February 13, 2020, Washington, DC – The Financial Data and Technology Association (FDATA) North America has released data that reveals consumers and small businesses lack critical access to their own financial data. The information demonstrates first, that there would be a broad, negative impact if screen scraping were to be turned off today and consumers and small businesses could only rely on current application programming interfaces (APIs). Second, the data highlights the connectivity challenges customers face when trying to use third-party financial providers.

Using information from its member companies, FDATA has determined that if screen scraping was prohibited and only APIs were available, as many as 1.8 billion U.S. consumer and small businesses accounts would lose functionality. 

FDATA North America also has measured “conversion success” and “recurring connection success” for different financial institutions (FIs), which is the percentage of time a consumer or small business was successful when attempting to link their FI account to a third-party tool. The data shows nearly half of U.S. customers are unable to connect their FI accounts to third-party financial tools of their choosing. The data also indicates a significant number of users experience trouble making recurring connections, which means their data does not automatically update each week, rendering their third-party financial tool less useful.

“Our data clearly shows data connectivity is an issue for almost half of all FI customers today, despite industry efforts to standardize data access through APIs.” said FDATA North America Executive Director Boms. “What’s more,  even if we moved to APIs, there would be significant limitations for end users because of data availability issues.”

These connection issues have very real, negative implications for consumers and small businesses. They may mean, for example, that a third-party cannot access the financial information or transaction data it needs to make a loan to a consumer or small business.

“Consumer and small business financial data access today is not ubiquitous, which means credential-based authentication is critical to ensuring continued access to technology-based, third-party tools,” said Boms. “While eliminating credentials from the ecosystem is a worthy goal that we are working toward, the data is clear: policymakers must consider asserting the legal right of Americans to access their own financial data. They also must understand that eliminating screen scraping before more robust APIs are widely available will have dire consequences for consumers’ and small businesses’ financial wellness.”

Click here to read FDATA North America’s study that determined up to 1.8 billion end users could lose access to vital financial tools if credential-based authentication were prohibited.


ABOUT FDATA NORTH AMERICA
FDATA was heavily involved in the UK Open Banking Working Group in 2015. In 2016, the working group’s output was published by Her Majesty’s Treasury as the Open Banking Standard. FDATA North America was founded in early 2018. Its members collectively provide tens of millions of consumers in Canada, the United States and Mexico with aggregation-based tools to better manage their finances. Existing FDATA North America members include: The Alliance for Innovative Regulation, Betterment, Direct ID, Envestnet Yodlee, Fintech Growth Syndicate, Flinks, Intuit, Kabbage, Mogo, Morningstsar, M Science, MX, Petal, Plaid, Questrade, Quicken Loans, TransUnion, Trustly, VoPay, Wealthica and others.

 

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