Glossary

We all love acronyms and technical jargon but trying to remember what they all mean can be a minefield. We’ve taken out the guesswork and have listed several here which you may hear in your Pensions Dashboard conversations or when making comparisons with Open Banking.

ABI

Association of British Insurers. A leading trade association for insurers and providers of long-term savings. The ABI lead the initial HMT sponsored Pensions Dashboard prototype project. Visit the Pensions Dashboard website for more details.

API

Application Programming Interface. A modern approach to design and programming that enables a clearly defined way for software applications to interact with each other. We use APIs on our mobile phones daily – check the weather, send a message, view our fitness data and embed maps.

B2B

Business to Business. In a Pensions dashboard context, this is the proposed secure messaging approach using mature and trusted security protocols between a Pension Finder Service and pension data providers. The security and onboarding governance likely requiring participants to be FCA regulated or approved.

Consumer Dashboard

A web or mobile proposition (application) used by a consumer to view their pension benefit and valuation data. It is anticipated that these will be provided by approved or regulated organisations and the new single financial guidance body.

CMA

Competition and Markets Authority. The body that set up and governs the Open Banking Implementation Entity, Open Banking Limited, which is funded by the UK’s nine largest retail banks (often referred to as The CMA9).   

DWP

Department for Work & Pensions. Responsible for welfare and pensions policy. DWP are producing a feasibility report for the Pensions Dashboard.

Federated Digital Identity

A way for applications and services to authenticate a person’s digital identity at an Identity Provider that is external to (or federated from) their service or organisation. Consumers commonly do this using their Facebook and Google identities to log in to web sites or mobile applications. For access to Government services this is provided via the GOV/UK Verify service. For financial advisers Origo has the Unipass federated Identity service which covers over 85% of the UK adviser market.

FinTech

Simply a combination of the words ‘Financial’ and ‘Technology’. It’s a term used to refer to businesses within the financial services sector that use technology to create new or improve existing financial processes and products.

GOV.UK Verify

This enables a citizen to use a secure way to prove who they are online, create a digital identity and then use this identity to access a growing list of GOV.UK online services that have been designed to use GOV.UK Verify. There are now 5 Identity Providers in the scheme who can create digital identities. They are Barclays, Digidentity, Experian, Post Office and SecureIdentity. New contracts signed with the UK Government in October 2018 now allow these Identity Providers to engage with the private sector to further encourage consumer registration (uptake) of Government standards grade identities.

ISP

Integration Service Provider. A market of technology enablers that will emerge to help pension providers and administrators make their data available for the modern and Open API design of the Pensions Dashboard target architecture

JSON

JavaScript Object Notation. A very common human readable text based data format used in modern API designs to transmit data for browser to server communications.

LoA

Level of Assurance. In the context of the Pensions Dashboard and access to State Pension data this is the degree of confidence that pension data providers require that the consumer is who they say they are before data is released. LoA definitions, LoA1 through LoA4, are set by Government Good Practice guidelines for Identity Providers to adhere to. It is possible for a consumer to initially register and receive an Identity at LoA1 and then, with further evidence of Identity, to increase their LoA.

OIDC

OpenID ConnectAn Open Standard for security based on OAuth v2.0 which enables identity credentials to be passed between applications. The underlying OAuth2 is a framework for authentication and authorisation and does not by default enable identity credentials to be passed between applications. OIDC is a simple Identity layer on top of OAuth2 (which is the de facto approach for authentication when developing mobile applications).   

Open Banking

Open Banking was created by the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority with the purpose of driving more competition and innovation in UK retail banking. New software standards for the Open Banking API have been defined and managed by Open Banking Limited. These have now been implemented by the CMA9 banks and this enables a new FinTech market to emerge that provides innovative services to the consumer e.g. aggregating and analysing banking information and payment services.

PFS

Pension Finder Service. Considered to be a core Pensions Dashboard architecture utility component, The PFS enables a consumer at any consumer dashboard to Find their pensions across the entire UK pensions industry. The Pensions Finder Service ensures that the consumer is first authenticated by seeking an Identity assertion from a federated digital identity provider before orchestrating the Find process.     

UMA

User Managed Access.  An open standard security profile (based on OAuth2).   UMA is designed to give a consumer (web user) a unified control point for authorising who and what can get access to their online personal data (such as identity attributes), content (such as pension data, health records, travel data) and services (such as viewing and creating status updates), no matter where all those things live on the web.



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