Sharia-compliant banking is a politically sensitive issue in many Muslim-majority countries and, on paper at least, it’s easy to see why. Historically speaking, religion and finance do not make comfortable bedfellows and as there’s no central authority promulgating Sharia law, it’s incredibly difficult to regulate. Because practices differ from conventional banking, it is also difficult for Islamic banks to follow global standards and in a continually evolving environment, that’s a real concern for many.
One recent UK banking trend that’s proven just as divisive as the political landscape of the country – Open Banking.
Launched in 2018, open banking was designed as a means of bringing a greater level of competition and innovation to the financial services sector. Instigated by the Competition and Markets Authority on behalf of the UK Government, it’s an initiative that aims to give people a more secure and clearer view of their finances.
Fintech upstarts have swept the financial world like a hurricane in the last decade, uprooting the antiquated operating processes and infrastructures of many legacy institutions in the process. Whilst the majority of the fintech headlines have been focused on the western world, however, it’s also become something of an obsession throughout the Middle East, particularly in the region’s key financial centres.
Financial inclusion has long been a challenge in many countries across the Middle East and North Africa. For example, according to Egypt Today, just 14% of adults in Egypt have a bank account. Greater investment in fintech, including non-traditional payment applications such as mobile money and e-wallets, is set to change this. From peer-to-peer lending to end-to-end social commerce platforms, we reveal the top ten fintech innovations in MENA today.
Cybersecurity has loomed over the retail banking industry and its debt collections processes for years as more high-profile cyber-attacks continue to hit the headlines.
Debt collections records are very sensitive as they contain a significant amount of financial information about customers. This makes retail banks who offer loans, credit cards and mortgages the perfect target for cybercriminals.
Debt collections is a complicated business. There are many moving pieces to juggle and any number of things that can go wrong. That’s why many banks choose to outsource some of their debt collections operations to third party agencies.