As online-only banks multiply throughout the Korean financial industry, more and more non-citizens living in Korea are facing technical challenges to register apps and devices.
Online-only banking service started its newest phase this year with the launch of the “K Bank” app on April 3rd this year. Then the “Kakao Bank” app attracted astronomical large numbers of customers in a short period of time. On July 27th, the Kakao Talk chat app left the public base.
However, non-citizen customers who are Koreans or who use the KakaoTalk chat app cannot log in to financial services. This is because the software prevents such users from verifying their identities on their devices.
To use the K Bank or Kakao Bank app, these non-citizens must register the app with their national ID card. However, this software cannot access the database of national ID cards that do not yet have citizenship. So technically, the app cannot recognize the ID.
In order to secure these neglected customers, some of the leading banks in Korea are moving into this niche, offering more effective and suitable mobile banking services.
A good example is the Woori Global Banking app owned by Woori Bank since 2013 and the Shinhan Global S Bank App launched by Shinhan Bank in January.
The first thing app users need to do is visit a nearby bank to verify their identity and get a public certificate issued for their new bank account. It then connects the certificate to the device to download apps available in multiple languages including English, Simplified Chinese, and Japanese to the device. Now you can check your bank balance anytime, anywhere and send money anywhere you have a Wi-Fi connection.
The bank also plans to further diversify and develop mobile banking services for non-citizen customers.
“Currently, you need a public certificate to log in to the app, but this will change soon. In the second half of this year, the app becomes much easier to use, allowing users to log in using a 6-digit PIN,” said Woori Bank official.
A Shinhan Bank official said, “Shinhan Bank will continue to develop banking services designed to meet the needs of our non-citizen customers.