Lebanon Opportunities

Smartphones are reshaping banking

The majority of banks are offering ever more digital solutions. The banks are competing among each other to attract increasingly technology-savvy customers, especially the younger segment. The banks continue to tap the latest technological advances. They outsource many of their digital solutions to local and international developers. New technology, such as biometrics, is enhancing the security of digital banking, which should encourage reluctant customers to finally enter the fray. Recent legislation, such as Parliament’s approval of the use of electronic signatures, will also help boost the industry.

A GROWING INDUSTRY

The percentage of people with a bank account that have adopted digital banking increased to 54 percent in 2017 from 38 percent a year earlier, according the Fintech Sector 2018 Factbook by the Investment Development Authority of Lebanon (IDAL). Banks are increasingly investing in digital and mobile technologies in order to enhance customer experience and reduce costs. , Chief Commercial Officer of Areeba, which provides e-payment solutions and fraud-monitoring services said: “The banking sector is a dynamic and innovative sector that adopts new technology very quickly thanks to the competition existing among the banks.” He said that both Visa and MasterCard acknowledge this fact. Bank of Beirut (BoB) is one of the banks investing in digital banking and has injected more than $80 million into its information technology (IT) infrastructure over the last Chairman of BoB. “We are continuously boosting our digital banking services and we invest in all kinds of digital banking solutions,” he said.

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