UK – open banking demand triples during Covid-19 pandemic

18 mai 2021

Over half of lenders have adopted open banking technology in the last 12 months. Rapid digitalisation has ushered in a boom in the use of new consumer-friendly financial tools.

The number of people choosing to share their data through open banking has tripled since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, according to the latest statistics from Experian.

In February, Experian’s Open Data Platform saw more than 188 million data sharing requests (up from 47 million in February 2020) – 30% of the 669 million made in the UK overall1.

Lenders are also seeing the benefits with recent Experian research finding that 57% of lenders have adopted open banking technology in the last 12 months, helping people manage their finances in more fluid and intuitive ways online.

An accelerated shift towards digital banking has seen a greater number of people taking advantage of a new wave of convenient apps and services that can help them manage their finances. As a result of the pandemic, many people have turned to digital – as accessing branches, or using cash, became increasingly difficult, particularly during lockdown.

Research showed one in five UK adults started using online banking powered apps during lockdown. Over half of Britons (54%) now say they now use them regularly2.

Lisa Fretwell, Managing Director of Data Services at Experian, said: “We’ve seen an incredible boom in digital financial tools over the course of 2020, especially when it comes to open banking powered services. People are increasingly understanding the ways their financial data can help them manage their finances more productively. They’re increasingly calling on it to support their financial management and planning – which is more of a priority than ever before – as we face into a second year of potential economic upheaval.”

The use of these financial digital apps and services offer people new insights that can help them manage their money and access better products that they may not have been able to access before. Many of these services are also personalised or tailored to someone’s individual behaviours or lifestyles, offering a much better user experience.

„In the future, other sources of financial data, such as mortgages, investment accounts, pensions and insurance, would help people manage their entire financial footprint in one central place,” Experian believes.

„It would also help them save with automated switching and renewal service personalised to their circumstances, get faster, cheaper finance, or tailored debt advice,” the company said.

The launch of Experian Boost in November has also been a major factor in the surge of open banking requests.

The new, free service has allowed more people to take control of their credit score by voluntarily adding further information about their everyday financial activity, such as Netflix or Amazon Prime subscription payments, via open banking – an industry first.

„This has become an important tool to help improve people’s chances of access to affordable credit, especially those seeking to soften the financial blow caused by the Covid-19 pandemic,” according to Experian.

Fretwell, continues: “Open banking has the potential to do so much good – transforming the way people manage their money, and helping them plan for the future with confidence. The next step is about moving as an industry to help build understanding about the benefits of these tools, so that everyone can feel confident in how and when they want to share their data, and the value they get in return.”

David Beardmore, Ecosystem Development Developer, Open Banking Implementation Entity said: „The are more than three million active users of Open banking and a growing number of fintech providers helping consumers and SMEs tackle and manage their day-to-day personal and business finance needs. Open banking is a safe and secure way to share your financial data and it’s great to see from this research that more people benefiting from the technology in the current climate.”

Experian’s Open Data Platform is currently being used by over 200 organisations and the technology has allowed credit card and auto finance providers, rental property agencies, mortgage lenders and gaming companies to better assess whether services are affordable for their customers.


  1. Figures from the Open Banking Implementation Entity (OBIE). 
  2. Research conducted by Open Banking Implementation Entity (OBIE) and sponsored by Nesta Challenges’ Open Up 2020 Challenge.
  3. Experian undertook survey with over 80 lenders in February on the deployment of Open banking in 2020.

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