In 2019, we’re seeing the virtual bank industry changing the personal finance game again. From social media banking to empowering the consumer to control their data, here are a few of the disruptive trends emerging in 2019.
Social Media Banking
To make banking a simpler, more convenient process for consumers, banks are looking for ways to break out of the standard banking app and meet customers where they are.
Citibank has already rolled out banking services integrated into China’s leading social media app WeChat. Among other things, customers can check balances and apply for loans while chatting with friends, without ever leaving the app.
BNP Paribas in Belgium is experimenting with integrating their home loan services into an app that lets you search for real estate. In 2019, look for more banks beginning to integrate their services into relevant social contexts. One day you may be doing your banking inside of Facebook!
Data Control Power is Shifting
In an age where more personal information than ever is available for private consumption, customers are growing leery of how and when banks are sharing their information. And so banks are moving to give customers more control over how their personal data is handled.
Wells Fargo recently announced Control Tower, an extension to their mobile app that lets consumers see which third parties are accessing their financial information and then switch that access on and off as they see fit.
But independent financial tech companies might be the future. A company called Sprout is designing an app that lets customers sell their anonymized personal financial data to companies. Finally, consumers will benefit financially from their data instead of big companies.
End of Passwords
In 2019, the banking industry is starting to give serious thought to the very real possibility that the rise of quantum computers could put an end to passwords as we know them.
Quantum computers are still in their infancy, but experts see the technology coming into its own within the next decade. Unlike standard computers, quantum computers will be capable of handling mind-boggling amounts of computation simultaneously. Where it might take a standard computer years to guess a given password by simply trying every possible combination, a quantum computer could do it in hours or even minutes.
This would spell the end for passwords. Banks are beginning to think about how security might be handled in a world where even heavy encryption is a snap to break. For now, the question is unanswered.
In banking, every year brings new changes, and 2019 is shaping up to be an impactful year for the industry.
About: Mr. Rory Brown has focused on financial technology and investment management for 30+ years. Rory Brown is currently working on a new app that will help consumers navigate online banking. The app will connect clients with the best virtual banks in the world, where they can get comparisons on rates for home loans, auto loans, and more.
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