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10 take outs on the Open Banking APIs Framework

The open banking framework was published a couple of weeks ago by the open banking working group. Here I share my 10 most salient take outs in 10 headings.

If you want to know what the 148 pages of the document really cover, read through this summary.

Before we start, I think they have done a tremendous job. It's an excellent document,  the proposals are bold, well presented and discussed. The work is definitely not over, but it's indeed promising and it should have a material impact on legislations like PSD2. I do think that they are on the right path to meet their mission statement:

"Unlocking the potential of open banking to improve competition, efficiency and stimulate innovation"

Here are my 10 key takeouts in 10 headings:

1 A Standard ( Data, API, Security) & Governance

The open banking framework covers the following

a)  Open Banking Standard:

- Data Standard: Rules by which data are described and recorded

- API Standard: Specs that inform the design, development and maintenance of an open API

- Security Standard: Security aspects of the API specification

b) Governance model: Governance needed to operationalise the Open Banking Standard


2 -  A 3 party model 

Who are the key participants in the OBF:

a) Data Attribute Providers: Organisations that hold data on behalf of their customers and will provide it to third parties subject to permissions being granted

b) Third Parties: Organisations that request permission to access customer's data from a data attribute provider and subject to that permission receive and process that data

c) Customers: Individual and business customers of data attribute provides that 'own' their dta and, at their discretion, may choose to make it available to third parties who can create value-added products and services for them

Note: An organisation can be both a data attribute and a a third party (for example banks)


 3 - Data: portable, explicit consent and specific usage

a) Data portability: Individuals may share their data freely with whomever they choose;
b) Consent: Individuals must provide explicit consent to sharing their data; and consent to be time bound
c) Specific usage: Individual's data may only be used for the pre-agreed purposes. 


4 - A rich variety of data sets

In scope:

a)  Open data: Data already public e.g. ATM location, product info,etc.

b)  Customer transaction data: Data usually presented to customers. E.g. balance, transaction history, payment info to facilitate payments

c)  Customer reference data: Data relating to KYC, AML, Credit checks

d)  Aggregated data: e.g. cash withdrawal per month in a particular postcode


Not in scope:

e)  Commercially sensitive data: e.g strategy, price-setting, policies , algorithms and data provided under licence 


5- Data sets: more granular details

See my blog here for the relevant slide

6 - Example: 6  potential propositions enabled by the open APIs

This list doesn’t aim to be exhaustive, but only to provide a set of potential use cases for the open Banking API

  • Proposition 1: current account comparison services
  • Proposition 2: Aggregated personal financial management
  • Proposition 3: Tailored lending products (personal and SMEs)
  • Proposition 4: Straight forward affordability check
  • Proposition 5: Better online accounting for SMEs
  • Proposition 6: fraud detection

Propositions covered in other legislations:

  • GOV.UK Verify: Centralised KYC
  • PSD2: Payment Initiation


7- Different security levels to access different data sets 

See my blog here for the relevant slide


8 - Authentication and authorization following main internet services standards

See my blog here for the relevant slide

9 - Implementation in 2018/19, with intermediate phased release

See my blog here for the relevant slide

10 - Staggered yearly API releases per data set. Iterative rather than big bang approach

See my blog here for the relevant slide


A final word

 There is plenty more in the published document, the intent isn't to summarise it in 10 short slides, rather to outline of some of the most salient points.

What other aspects of the framework do you think should have been added to this overview? 

I suggest you have a look at the article I orginially published as you might find the original slide format more convenient and with some more information.

If you have found this piece interesting and useful do let me know via the comment section, twitter, linkedin, etc..

 Hakim is available for interim roles and consulting projects on digital product management, strategy,  proposition development and transformation in Fintech and retail banking. He led mobile strategy and product at Lloyds Banking Group. More recently he was in charge of digital strategy and propositions for small business at RBS. He is also founder @FrenchDigital.

A new dawn for banking?

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This post is from a series of posts in the group:

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