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Wells Fargo partners with Intuit for data exchange

Published 07 February 2017

Wells Fargo & Company announced that it had entered into an agreement with Intuit to allow customers to use an innovative application-programming interface (API) when importing their bank account information.

The facility is provided for the customers who use financial management tools such as QuickBooks Online, Mint, and TurboTax Online.

Wells Fargo Virtual Channels digital head Brett Pitts said:  “We’re excited to work with Intuit on transforming the data-sharing process.

“This agreement creates a much better experience for our shared customers, gives them greater control over their financial data, and enhances the efficiency of the data-sharing process.”

The API at the center of this new data-sharing method is designed to be modular and flexible. This allows the API to deliver everything from data sharing and retrieval to specialized use cases and microservices.

“The APIs that we have created for the purposes of sharing data with firms such as Intuit are truly unique to the industry,” Pitts underscored. “These new tools are designed to be flexible and adaptable, while meeting the needs of the customer, the bank, and the providers of financial management tools.”

“This agreement builds on Intuit’s track record of innovating to ensure that consumers and small businesses benefit from access to data so that they can take control of their financial lives,” said Tayloe Stansbury, executive vice president and Chief Technology Officer of Intuit. “We’re pleased to join with Wells Fargo to provide our shared customers with greater access and control of their financial information.”

The API used in the Wells Fargo-Intuit agreement has been designed to utilize a secure, tokenized “handshake” between the companies’ servers. The API eliminates the need for Intuit customers who use QuickBooks Online, Mint and TurboTax Online to share their Wells Fargo usernames and passwords, and the need for Intuit to store them in order to retrieve Wells Fargo account data.

“The customer has more choice and control with this new model,” said Pitts. “Customers choose what account information they want to share with Intuit, and, through the API, the customer’s credentials are not used to initiate the data sharing.”

The enrollment process is easy and is designed to work seamlessly in the Intuit user experience:

  • When Intuit customers are logged in to Mint, QuickBooks Online or TurboTax Online and wish to set up or add a Wells Fargo account, they will be directed to a Wells Fargo secure server to begin the enrollment process.
  • After the customer logs directly into Wells Fargo online banking, they’re presented with a “Connect Accounts” page, where they authorize the data they wish Wells Fargo to share with Intuit. This gives customers control of the data they want to share.
  • After confirming the account information, the customer is then directed back to the Intuit service they’re logged in to. Data sharing between Wells Fargo’s servers and Intuit’s servers is then done via a unique token that identifies the customer and the customer’s accounts.

Direct bank feeds are a fundamental component of financial management software and cloud accounting because they automate much of the time-consuming data entry once associated with bookkeeping. By automatically transferring data between their bank and their financial management platform, customers save valuable time and avoid potential data-entry errors. Direct bank feeds deliver three key benefits:

  • Accuracy and Reliability: Financial data is delivered directly from a financial institution to the management platform. This helps ensure that information is current.
  • Customer Control of Data: Customers can access their personal and business information at any time, with their tool of choice.
  • Time Savings: The need for manual data entry is dramatically reduced because new transactions are automatically imported into the financial management platform every time a customer logs in. Customers can add and reconcile expenses at the click of a button.

Intuit will access Wells Fargo’s data exchange API on Wells Fargo’s Gateway Channel developer portal, and work to integrate it into the Intuit user experience for Wells Fargo customers by the second half of the year. Wells Fargo’s new Gateway Channel, launched in September of 2016, offers APIs that allow commercial and corporate banking customers to integrate Wells Fargo products, services and information into their own digital environments.

 



Source: Company Press Release