Top financial policymaking body, the Financial Services Commission (FSC), has launched plans to lower regulatory barriers for insurers and other local financial firms to tap databases in the public sector to improve their products, while also strengthening ways for consumers to take control of their own personal information shared by different financial services firms.
The FSC expects that a random sample, as large as 2% of the information pool, could be used to develop new financial products, analyse markets and conduct academic research, reported The Korea Herald.
In a meeting with heads of associations of insurers, banks, investment firms and card firms, FSC Chairman Choi Jong-ku said the measures would spur the use of big data in the financial sector.
Regulation over private information protection was already assessed to be at the highest level in 2013, and tightened further in 2014 in the wake of information leaks by credit card firms, Mr Choi said.
He stated: “Such strengthening of the regulatory barrier has significantly undermined the use of big data in the private sector.
“It’s imperative to make a radical change in policy direction in order to salvage the balance between personal information security and financial firms’ active use of data.”
Under the measures, security-enhanced sample databases from state-led agencies like the Korea Credit Information Services or the Korea Insurance Development Institute will be made accessible to financial firms, financial technology startups and research institutions, starting in the second half of 2018 through legislative changes.
In addition, the FSC will establish a big data brokerage platform on a separate agency, the Financial Security Institute, by the first half of 2019, so that “de-identified data” sets could be traded.
The Commission also promised financial customers data portability by the first half of this year. Through this, consumers can also keep track of financial firms’ usage of private information and choose to refuse the use of personal data for their own purposes.