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S. Korea to launch financial data exchange platform in March


South Korea will test-run a financial data exchange platform in March, enabling users to sell and purchase such data conveniently, the nation’s top financial regulator said Tuesday, in a move seen as an effort to accelerate digital transformation.

According to the policymaking Financial Services Commission, the data will be uploaded to the platform by providers including financial and public institutions, insurance companies and mobile operators. It will then be purchased by buyers such as financial technology firms or educational and research institutions.

The FSS aims to provide a comprehensive service to its buyers, allowing them to check, sign contracts and purchase data -- all through the platform. Buyers will be able to develop new services including an analysis of commercial districts based on a combination of foot traffic data provided by public institutions and credit card sales data provided by card companies, the FSS said.

The exchange will be operated by the state-run Financial Security Institute, an independent agency tasked with bolstering information management and protection capabilities in the financial sector.

The platform is part of the FSS’ latest moves to create an ecosystem of financial big data, a plan it announced in June last year.

Legal grounds to establish the platform was established after the National Assembly passed three data-related bills on Jan. 9, aiming to enable the use of personal information offered under aliases for compiling statistics and industrial research.

The FSC hailed the passage of the bills in a recent statement, saying it will accelerate the financial industry’s digital transformation.

The FSI will carefully monitor whether the data is being traded under aliases or anonymously. It will also provide special services such as data analyses to sellers, for financial institutions reluctant to upload raw data for fear of information leaks.

An “appropriate standard” for data pricing will be established as well, the FSC said.