Why there can occur problems in Outbank currently
Everything you need to know about the new EU Payment Services Directive at Outbank
The next few months will be exciting: By 14 September 2019, all banks and fintechs in Europe will have to fully implement the European Commission’s Payment Services Directive PSD2.
The changes made by PSD2 have two main goals: safety and innovation. On the one hand, online payments shall become safer, easier, and cheaper. On the other hand, an increased competition between banks and fintechs should lead to more innovative offers.
Changes will not only be huge for banks and fintechs but even for you as customer. Your Outbank will also receive some updates.
We answer the most burning questions about the new policy and explain its impact on your Outbank app.
What exactly is the new Payment Services Directive?
Core of the Payment Services Directive 2 (PSD2) is to better protect users when paying online. Therefore, a “Strong Customer Authentication” (SCA) is implemented: As of September, users must identify themselves at least every 90 days in their banks’ online banking portal and in their multi-banking app. For example, the user has to enter an additional PIN / TAN, which he receives via a TAN generator or via SMS (two-factor authentication or 2-FA). Credit card misuse or fraud should therefore be virtually impossible.
Another object of the PSD2 is to end the monopoly of the banks on customer data and to open the market. The aim is to generate more innovative offers and better services. In order for third party vendors to retrieve customer data, banks must provide interfaces. Anyone who already has access to the data or would like to have it in the future requires a license from the BaFin (Federal Financial Supervisory Authority in Germany).
What are the benefits of PSD2 for me as a bank customer?
Stricter guidelines for identity verification as the strong customer authentication make it nearly impossible for fraudsters to steal money with stolen credit card data. The effort for you as a bank customer is thus indeed higher than before — because you have to identify yourself more often — but the risk of fraud and theft decreases immensely.
Good to know: Outbank is currently exempted from the legal regulations, as we as the provider of the app have no access to customer data. At Outbank, all financial data is encrypted on the user’s device. The bank data query is thus not made by the company Outbank or Verivox, but by your own device. How this works is described in our security whitepaper.
What impact does the Payment Services Directive have on me as an Outbank user?
As with all providers of (multi-) banking apps, the PSD2 also affects Outbank.
Due to the mandatory 2-factor authentication, you will need to authenticate yourself regularly in Outbank in your bank accounts in order to retrieve your financial data. This means that you have to enter an additional PIN / TAN for each bank at certain intervals. You receive these for each transaction individually, for example via TAN generator or SMS. How often this authentication will take place depends on the particular bank — according to PSD2 at least every 90 days.
Also, it is very likely that retrieving your bank details in Outbank will not work every now and then over the next few months. The reason is that the banks are developing new interfaces for the PSD2. These we need to re-implement in the Outbank app so that the app can continue to retrieve your financial data from the bank.
Why are the changes in Outbank so extensive?
Many fintechs and multi-banking apps already have access to user data. This is usually done via the interface “HBCI +” or “FinTS PIN / TAN”, which is used by most banks in Germany. The Outbank app on your device uses this interface to retrieve your data from the bank. Since the interface is not regulated, banks need to develop new proprietary interfaces that comply with the PSD2 regulations.
Instead of a single “standard” interface, the Outbank app will be connected to a large number of individual interfaces. To ensure that all functions in Outbank continue to function as usual after September 14, our developers need to integrate every single interface into the Outbank app.
Whenever a bank provides its new interface, this can lead to problems in Outbank. Of course, we try to make the process as smooth as possible for you. We ask for your understanding — if you have any questions, please contact our support.
A technical excursus
From banks that do not support “HBCI +” or “FinTS PIN / TAN” Outbank currently queries data via screen scraping or screen parsing. The data is read directly via the access on the online banking website. Even with these banks we adapt the changes of the PSD2 in Outbank.
What should I do if my bank does not work in Outbank?
An info icon “i” next to your bank account appears when there are problems with your bank or your account. If you tap or click on it, you will see a hint with a link to our help page. You can also access the help page directly from the app via ‘Settings’ > ‘Help’ > ‘Known Issues’ (iOS & Android) or ‘Help’ > Visit Support Page’ (macOS). All further questions will be answered by our support.
Where can I find more information about PSD2?
Here the Deutsche Bundesbank (Federal German Bank) informs about the changes of PSD2 generally. For more details, please consider the website of your bank.
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