A Consumer Manifesto for Open Banking

Open Banking holds huge potential. It could put people in control of their financial data and enable products and services that work for customers and citizens. In order for this potential to materialise for all consumers and citizens, Open Banking needs a clear purpose and values to guide it. This is why the Lab has worked with consumer groups to co-develop a Manifesto.

The manifesto sets out five prerequisite for building trust among consumers and delivering the types of services they need and expect:

  • Open banking should be a force for good which promotes financial inclusion and widens access to more useful, affordable and understandable financial services for everyone.

  • Services should meet people’s positive expectations, be upfront about how they’re paid for and how they use personal data. They should be sold and delivered in a way which respects people’s identity, their data and their right to make the most of their money and live the lives they want to.

  • Open banking should genuinely equip people with real power to control access to their account and use of their data. People should be able to stop sharing access to their account easily without facing penalties.

  • Open banking should be reliable and as secure as it possibly can be. It should be clear to people with whom they are sharing their data and the legitimacy of those companies. Data breaches and fraud should be rare and exceptional, not the rule.

  • People, their identity and their money should be universally safe. People should not bear unfair risk. When things go wrong people should have simple, free, quick access to help and redress.

Among the signatories are the UK’s leading consumer and policy experts including AgeUK, Citizens Advice, Money and Mental Health Policy Institute, StepChange Debt Charity and Which?

The Manifesto is being launched at the Open Banking Convention, co-convened by the Finance Innovation Lab and the Open Banking Implementation Entity.

Marloes Nicholls, Head of Programmes at the Finance Innovation Lab said:

Open Banking could change the face of finance – but if we want it to help everyone in society, it’s vital we look beyond pure competition and understand how the new standards can support financial health. This Manifesto shows the potential for Open Banking to give customers more control over their finances – but also the risk of our data being used against us. If we want to maximise the benefits and avoid the pitfalls of Open Banking, we need much greater collaboration between civil society and fintechs. Today’s Open Banking Convention, co-hosted by the Finance Innovation Lab, is a great first step.

Faith Reynolds, Consumer Representative on the Open Banking Implementation Entity said:

“There are enthusiasts for open banking among the consumer groups, but there are also sceptics. What we all agree on is the need for providers to demonstrate a commitment to good consumer outcomes in the form of safe, useful and affordable products. This is why we’re publishing the Manifesto. There’s a real opportunity to re-align consumer and commercial interests. If we can work with the industry to deliver on the five principles of the manifesto, everyone should win.”

Download the Manifesto here.