United States

New mobile banking bill


A bill passed by the U.S. House of Representatives proposes to streamline the process for consumers wishing to open bank accounts online or via a mobile device. The proposed changes would create a national standard authorizing banks to scan and retain information from driver’s licenses when a consumer makes a request to open an account through a website or mobile device. Although this is already allowed by multiple states, this bill would make it a national standard opening up the banking world to the unbanked and underbanked people of the United States.

Known as the Making Online Banking Initiation Legal and Easy Act of 2017 (MOBILE Act), it would allow all financial institutions across all 50 states to record personal information from a scanned copy of a driver's license or other personal identification card and store the information electronically when an individual initiates an online request to open an account or obtain a financial product. The ability to open an account online without having to go to a bank, would allow communities where access to physical banks is limited, to have access to financial resources. The bill would also require that the copies of the driver’s license be deleted after using it for the allowed purpose, protecting consumer privacy and upholding state privacy laws.