NEW YORK (TheStreet) ? The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau wants to sure everyone gets a fair shot at using mobile banking technology to better manage their money. It wants mobile banking to be as universal as possible, available to Americans across all financial demographics.
"In a world where people can manage their money on the go, there is great potential to serve more consumers and allow them to take greater control of their finances," says Richard Cordray, director of the CFPB. "But we need to make sure all consumers are protected whether they are opening their wallets or scanning the screen on their smartphones."
Consider these statistics, gathered by the CFPB:
- 90% of U.S. citizens own a cellphone.
- 60% of that number own a smartphone.
- 50 million Americans own a computer tablet.
- 33% of cellphone users and 50% of smartphone users found "greater access" to their banks and financial institutions.
- Last year, 74,000 U.S adults began using mobile banking on a daily basis.
The agency is especially interested in how the unbanked and the underbanked ? people who don't use banks or who may rely on pay-day lenders and check chasing services in lieu of banks ? use mobile banking. A recent Federal Reserve study says the unbanked are actually big users of mobile banking technology, using it "in greater numbers" than the general population.
Thus the new directive out of Washington, D.C., and the CFPB to focus on mobile banking to ensure the unbanked/underbanked "gain access to the banking system and grow their financial capability."