Open banking apps

What is an open banking app?

An open banking app is any mobile application or a piece of software that uses open banking APIs to provide you with a service. Such services may include instant payments, a dashboard of your finances showing your accounts from different banks, proof of income, credit status verification and money-saving advice.

What is an authorised provider?

An authorised provider in the UK is a company that has been checked and authorised by the FCA (Financial Conduct Authority) to provide open banking services, and is subject to the Payment Services Regulations (the law applicable to open banking providers in the UK). In short, this means that the company can be trusted to provide open banking services to consumers.

A provider may be authorised to supply services relating to account information, or to provide payment services, or both.

How do I check if a provider is authorised?

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) authorises and supervises open banking providers in the UK. You can check whether a firm is authorised to provide these services on the FCA Financial Services Register.

What happens if I experience fraud with open banking?

Account information services (AIS)

Fraud is very unlikely. Your data can only be accessed if you give explicit consent to a regulated provider – and you must do so in a way that meets the requirements of Strong Customer Authentication (eg with your Face ID or fingerprint).

Even with your permission, third party ‘AIS’ providers only have access to account data eg information about your transactions. They have no access to security credentials that could be used to take money from your account. Their access is also ‘read-only’ meaning they cannot change any information or take any actions within your account. 

Once an AIS provider has fetched data from your account, they must ensure the data is secure. They can only share it with another party at your instruction and are subject to requirements under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Payment Initiation Services (PIS)

Fraudulent transactions are extremely unlikely. In fact, compared with payment methods such as credit cards, open banking is exceptionally secure. This is because each payment needs to be authorised by you providing your secure banking credentials to your bank.  

In the unlikely event of a mistaken or fraudulent transaction, open banking customers are covered by consumer protection laws that oblige their bank to refund any legitimate losses back into their bank account.

Learn more about more about consumer and buyer protections for open banking.