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Future Commercial Litigation Issue? Banks & Tech Firms Battle Over Your Data


The New York Times featured an interesting article on March 23rd concerning the battle between banks and Silicon Valley concerning your personal financial data. Specifically, technology companies have been building services that assemble information such as your bank account and credit card records—once you supply the records—with banks now concerned about what information is conveyed and how it’s accessed. The issue is one that involves state and federal commercial laws that affect banking, business, cybercrime, corporations, and consumer fraud.

While banks claim to want to provide consumers access to their financial data, as it improves efficiency, and can also save time and money, they have also stated that new rules are needed due to a complete lack of standards concerning how technology companies handle this personal financial data. Many of the tech companies have responded that that these steps are, instead, more of an effort by the financial institutions to circumvent antitrust laws and prevent financial upstarts from offering better deals on loans and banking accounts.

The battle highlights just how valuable these industries view personal financial data and digital records, and it doesn’t just involve banking, but data ranging from everything about what products you purchase, to how much you pay for your mortgage or auto insurance. Companies are eager to gain access to it in order to figure out what the best circumstances are to market products to consumers.

Consumer Protection Interests Push For More Sharing

While the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act directed banks to make electronic records available to consumers, very little detail as to how this should be accomplished was provided by the law itself. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has commented that the banks should provide customers with more control over their own data—including making it easier for customers to share their financial data with whomever they choose in order to obtain the best rates, prices, etc. possible. The CFPB remains concerned that some institutions may be unnecessarily limiting or restricting access, even when customers specifically request that information related to the interest rates and fees they are charged by a bank be passed on. Some of the banks have pointed out that that they specifically do not want to share this information.

While the CFPB has been pushing to draft new rules concerning customer choices when it comes to sharing personal financial data, banks have been taking the initiative to draw up specific agreements concerning how technology companies can use the data they receive. For example, both Wells Fargo and JPMorgan recently signed agreements with Intuit governing what information Intuit will have access to and what rules will govern how the company uses that data.

Commercial Litigation Attorneys Serving Florida

At Lavalle, Brown & Ronan, P.A., we have a combined 130 years of experience representing clients in commercial law cases. We provide our services to those living in Boca Raton and surrounding areas. If you or a loved one has been involved in a commercial dispute, or is concerned about any area related to commercial law, contact us today for assistance.

For more information and in depth analysis, please contact Attorney Ken Ronan at and Case Manager Richard Bagdasarian at


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