Episode 530: Automate Payment Operation with "Banking APIs"

Monday, April 10, 2017

Automatic operation of bank account

"Banking APIs" is booming in Japan.

Questetra Inc., which is hosting this Workflow Sample blog, can also check real-time deposit information by "the benefits of API cooperation between" MF Cloud "(Accounting Cloud) and" Mizuho Business Web "(Bank Online Service)" , And the record to the accounting system is to be processed about on the same day (daily settlement). (Information on accounts receivable and so on that can be created only by workflow is still by "CSV import" ... but I believe MF Cloud itself would provide an API in near future ...)

* Incidentally, cooperation by "scraping method" (method of passing bank password to the Accounting-cloud) has been forbidden to use.

The policy of "Bank API" that enables data connection of this deposit / withdrawal information is expected to be legislated as "revision of the Banking Act" in 2017, and the FinTech industry also accepts it favorably. Therefore, it is expected that the bank system and various online services will be closely connected in the future.

Start with data retrieving API

However, at present, only some businesses can access "Bank API".

For the future as well, it is expected that a certain review will be in place to become an accessible business operator. Moreover, it could be a "licensing system", depending on the discussion in the current Diet session.

Also, regarding the access permission of the bank side, there is a possibility that it will be limited to "Data retrieving API" for the time being.

That is, I suppose that it is started as a service limited to data reference communication without movement of assets such as "acquisition of deposit / withdrawal information" or "acquisition of balance information", as a trial operation period of "API service". (Even though cases of 'Data updating API comes out already since April 2017...)

By the way, "Issues unique to Japan" is also hidden.

That is, there are historical circumstances that most account names have been handled in "Half-width kana" which is uncommon for modern computers. It results that systems accessing to APIs will be required "Data conversion" for their own (Automatic Journal entry rule, etc.)

[Remittance Process]

If it becomes "Open API"

This Business Process Definition expresses the "Payment process".

Maybe it is easier to understand saying that the Business Processes is a digitization of operations which "paper" invoices received from suppliers, for such as materials and supplies, to be handed over to the Accounting.

However, as of today, it is not permitted to directly access "Bank API" from Questetra side (Workflow system side), and there is no "Fintech agent" who is deploying API service. In other words, this Business Process is a Workflow application under the assumption that if "bank API" becomes open API. (Automated Settlement Process)

* There is nothing configured in the automatic communication step (Script Task).

Trends in other Settlement APIs

In retrospect, it was 1998 when it became possible to instruct remittances from bank accounts online (Internet banking). It can be said that the settlement business of a company has become very efficient over the past 20 years.

And there are many news reports that evaluate "Bank API" in Japan as an advanced effort globally.

However, we will have to say that "API for bank transfer remittance settlement" is far behind, compared to APIs in other payment methods such as "smartphone", "PayPal account", or "Bitcoin".

In particular, the smartphone settlement "WeChat Pay" (Tencent, China), which has made an unprecedented rapid expansion in just two or three years, aside from the legal issue, has already settled on a scale of 100 trillion yen. That shows the degree of growth that may exceed the amount of 6.8 trillion dollars of the world settlement of VISA card. And that API shows signs that it is going to be quite practical.

In addition, the PayPal API that is deploying the "PayPal account" to the world is already in a situation where increasing the countries that can use the remittance API (Payouts API). That means, depending on the company, remittances such as sales commissions and incentives can be automated by API communication.

I would like to keep my eyes on how Japan's "Bank API" will fight against hindrances, and how it will evolve in the future, from the viewpoint of business efficiency.

[Remittance Process:"1. Register remittance" screen]

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