BUSINESS

Regulator voices concerns about data privacy over fintech

By Yonhap
  • Published : Nov 15, 2017 - 11:00
  • Updated : Nov 15, 2017 - 11:00

The financial technology industry is opening the door to better and cheaper financial services, but regulators need to address concerns about the privacy of customer information, South Korea's financial regulator said Wednesday.

Choe Heung-sik, governor of the Financial Supervisory Service, made the remarks during a forum on the fintech industry in Seoul.

"Today, fintech innovations are disrupting and unbundling services that have long been the domain of traditional financial service providers," Choe said.

"For consumers, fintech is opening the door to more, better, and cheaper financial services than ever before," he said. 

Financial Supervisory Service Governor Choe Heung-sik (Yonhap)

Risks of infringement of people's right to privacy by companies in the financial sector has been one of the top concerns as many people who use online shopping or financial services put their privacy at risk.

"Despite fintech's many great promises, there are those who also voice concerns about new risks that fintech innovations will bring," Choe said.

"One is that, as more big data sellers collect huge amounts of personal information for profit, our privacy will be compromised," the FSS chief pointed out.

To help address such concerns, Choe urged fintech firms and traditional financial companies to deliver "responsible" services.

Regulators also need to "cultivate a fintech-friendly regulatory environment." to continually encourage investment in new technology and service development, Choe said.

Choe also called for financial regulators around the world to step up cooperation to keep such risks at bay.

"The last guiding principle I would note here is the principle of cross-border and global cooperation among regulators and international organizations," Choe said.

"The principle of cooperation is particularly relevant in the fintech era because fintech services can cross national borders at a far faster speed than non-fintech services," he said. (Yonhap)