There has been new legislation passed called the PSD2, or the Revised Payment Service Directive, where banks will have to give access to your account information to third parties, but only with your consent.

Living in a country like the Netherlands, where the cost of living is quite high, your financial planning would require you to budget even that couple of euros you spend everyday on your coffee-to-go. Tracking and budgeting your monthly expenses is a skill everyone learns so that they can save for their next holiday, buying a new home, or just for a rainy day fund.

This new directive will give access to third parties, like for example budgeting apps, about your monthly income and expenses. This means that they will know how many times you visit your local bar, how much you spend on your groceries, if you pay alimony, and so on. In essence, the companies will know a lot about your lifestyle, if you wish to use these services. They can now start applying for a license at De Nederlandsche Bank (DNB), where they will have access to your account information for 90 days. However, the licensing process can take a long time.

PSD2: raising competition for banks, start-ups, and tech companies

The PSD2 would mean that your banks are not the only ones who would be privy to this information anymore. This directive is already put in use by other countries in Europe, and the Netherlands has only passed it. It comes directly from Brussels, as they would like to see a lot more competition within the banking sector.

Thanks to this new legislation, third party companies can offer services so that you can view all your information from different bank accounts in one place. This would mean a further convenience for you as a consumer, as you will be able to track your spending and income across different accounts. If a certain bank opts to not get in on this, depending on the consumer demand for this, it would mean a loss of clientele.

The PSD2 also presents new opportunities to start-ups, who are looking to expand their market in developing these apps and databases for the consumers to use. Additionally, large tech companies like Google and Facebook may not shy away from the possibilities this directive could present to them. For example, they could offer you services to get an insight into your spending patterns. They know everything else about us already, so why not this? And we all know how much they respect our privacy, amirite?

But remember: your consent is important

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The PSD2 requires the coordination between different entities in the Netherlands: Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) who regulates and monitors the competition for sector specific markets, Netherlands Authority for Financial Markets (AFM) who regulates the financial markets, and Autoriteit Persoonsgegevens or the Dutch Data Protection Authority that supervises the processing of personal data.

It is an added responsibility to the Dutch Data Protection Authority, on top of the new privacy law after the whole Facebook fiasco, to ensure that the your data is not misused. The banks will not be able to take responsibility, nor will they be able to monitor how your data is being used by the third party companies. They will be required by law to give access to your information, if you have consented to this.

If you fear that your data has been mishandled, you will be able to submit an official complaint with the Dutch Data Protection Authority. So don’t forget to read that fine print in the terms and conditions before you sign up, because you don’t want any scares later!

Would you want to have any of these apps or services on your phones, or are you getting along just fine? Let us know in the comments!

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