|A poster promoting Woori Bank's online banking|
Woori Bank has strengthened its data sharing system with 14 fintech firms to better help customers use new and innovative services on its online platform WiBee Bank, the bank said Wednesday.
The services include ways to avoid voice phishing, and recommendations on auto insurance, auto prices and promising stocks, among others.
This is part of "Open Finance," defined by closer integration between Woori and promising fintech companies to share data, functions and customer bases, a key initiative of bank CEO Sohn Tae-seung who doubles as Woori Financial Group chairman.
The bank said customers will be able to use the services on the online platform without having to install new apps. It also plans to increase the number of services available on the platform.
"Fintech firms have innovative technologies and services, but they oftentimes struggle because they do not have a comprehensive marketing and distributing channel to promote and make new financial products available," a Woori official said.
"Our WiBee Bank in that sense will be of great help to the fintechs with potential for growth," he added.
The data sharing is part of long-term strategy to enhance "open banking," a new financial data management and operating system set to go into effect in October.
Open banking is a comprehensive joint payment system based on an application programming interface (API), an intermediary program that enables various software to interact.
Under the new system, fintech firnms will obtain broader access to financial data, and customers will be able to transfer cash using any app operated by any banks or fintech firms.
Many traditional market players ― mostly banks ― have been increasing efforts to boost collaboration with fintech companies to gain the upper hand as they are under growing threat of being reduced to mere developers and sellers of financial products with customer data in their possession.
The fear rings true given they are capable of developing far greater services in user interface (UI) and user experience (UX). UX focuses on how something works and how people interact with it, and UI on the look and layout.