Singapore Launches Digital Infrastructure to Facilitate Financial Planning

SGFinDex uses SingPass and a centrally managed online consent system to enable individuals to access their financial information held across different government agencies and FIs.

MAS (Monetary Authority of Singapore) and the SNDGG (Smart Nation and Digital Government Group) have launched the Singapore Financial Data Exchange (SGFinDex), a public digital infrastructure that will facilitate the consolidation of financial information for more effective financial planning.

The SNDGG was set up under the Singapore Prime Minister’s Office in May 2017 to drive and coordinate Smart Nation and digitalisation efforts across the government. It is made up of the SNDGO (Smart Nation and Digital Government Office) and GovTech (Government Technology Agency).

“SGFinDex is the world’s first public digital infrastructure to use a national digital identity and centrally managed online consent system to enable individuals to access, through applications, their financial information held across different government agencies and financial institutions, says a joint statement released at SFF x SWITCH on Monday (7 December).

SGFinDex was developed on SingPass – Singapore’s national digital identity system – by the public sector in collaboration with ABS (The Association of Banks in Singapore) and seven participating banks – DBS, OCBC, UOB, Citibank, HSBC, Maybank and Standard Chartered.

With SGFinDex, individuals are able to use their SingPass to retrieve personal financial information (such as deposits, credit cards, loans, and investments) from participating banks, and their financial information (such as HDB loans and CPF balances) from the relevant government agencies.

“This will help individuals better understand their overall financial health and plan their finances holistically,” the statement reads. “In the next phase of SGFinDex, individuals will be able to access information on their insurance policies held with insurers and their holdings of stocks at the Central Depository.”

Additionally, Singapore’s MOM (Ministry of Manpower) and GovTech have developed a digital financial planning service called MyMoneySense, which makes use of SGFinDex to provide Singaporeans with an overview of their finances. “It will offer trusted, personalised and actionable guidance for more effective and comprehensive financial planning.”

Several participating banks have also tapped on SGFinDex to offer enhanced financial planning services to customers, providing applications covering money management, investments, identifying protection needs and retirement planning.

SGFinDex is designed to ensure data protection and privacy. Personal financial information is only transmited but not stored, and financial data can only be retrieved only through explicit consent of the customer, whose identity must be verified through SingPass. In addition, all data transmitted through SGFinDex is encrypted and can be read only on the financial planning applications receiving the data.

“Today, our personal financial information is fragmented across multiple entities, and we often take financial decisions, like making an investment or buying a house, without a holistic view of our financial situation,” said MAS Managing Director Ravi Menon.

“SGFinDex empowers the individual to consolidate his financial information for a comprehensive view of his portfolio, and use digital tools like MyMoneySense to make better financial decisions.”

According to DBS Singapore Country Head Shee Tse Koon, SGFinDex empowers customers by providing a “helicopter view” of their finances, allowing the financial sector to serve personalised insights and actionable recommendations on how customers can grow their money.

More information on SGFinDex is available here.

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