PSD2 Compliance: What Banks Need to Know and Do

The revised Payment Services Directive (PSD2) has brought significant changes to the banking industry, aiming to enhance consumer protection, promote competition, and foster innovation in the European payment services market. As banks adapt to the new regulatory landscape, it is crucial for them to understand the key requirements and take the necessary steps to achieve PSD2 compliance. In this article, we will explore what banks need to know and do to meet the obligations set forth by PSD2.

Understanding the Key Requirements of PSD2:

Strong Customer Authentication (SCA)

One of the primary goals of PSD2 is to reinforce security in payment transactions. Banks must implement Strong Customer Authentication (SCA), which involves validating the customer’s identity through two or more authentication factors, categorized as “knowledge,” “possession,” and “inherence.” This ensures that the customer’s credentials are protected and reduces the risk of fraudulent activities.

Access to Account (XS2A) and Third-Party Providers (TPPs)

PSD2 introduces the concept of Access to Account (XS2A), allowing licensed Third-Party Providers (TPPs) to access customer account information and initiate payments with the customer’s consent. Banks must provide secure and standardized interfaces (APIs) for TPPs to access customer data and initiate transactions. This requires robust authentication protocols, data encryption, and secure communication channels.

Regulatory Reporting and Open Banking

Under PSD2, banks are required to provide regulatory reports to the relevant authorities, disclosing information about payment services, transaction volumes, and fraud incidents. Additionally, PSD2 encourages Open Banking initiatives, enabling customers to securely share their financial data with authorized TPPs, fostering innovation and offering new services.

Steps Banks Need to Take for PSD2 Compliance:

1. Assess and Analyze the Impact

Banks must conduct a comprehensive assessment of their existing systems, processes, and infrastructure to determine the impact of PSD2. This involves evaluating their authentication methods, API capabilities, security protocols, and operational readiness for XS2A and TPP interactions.

2. Implement Strong Customer Authentication (SCA)

Banks need to implement SCA mechanisms that comply with the requirements outlined in PSD2. This may involve upgrading their authentication systems, adopting multi-factor authentication methods, and educating customers about the new authentication processes.

3. Develop and Deploy Secure APIs

To facilitate XS2A and TPP interactions, banks must develop and deploy secure APIs that adhere to the specifications provided by regulatory bodies. These APIs should support secure data exchange, implement access controls, and ensure encryption of sensitive customer information.

4. Enhance Fraud Detection and Prevention

PSD2 places emphasis on fraud prevention and risk management. Banks should enhance their fraud detection capabilities by implementing advanced analytics, monitoring systems, and transaction profiling to identify and mitigate suspicious activities promptly.

5. Establish Consent Management Framework

Banks need to establish a robust consent management framework to manage customer consent for data sharing with TPPs. This involves implementing mechanisms for customers to provide and withdraw consent, as well as maintaining clear records of consent.

6. Review and Update Customer Agreements

Existing customer agreements and terms of service must be reviewed and updated to align with the requirements of PSD2. Banks should clearly communicate changes related to XS2A, data sharing, and customer rights to ensure transparency and compliance.

7. Educate Customers

Banks play a vital role in educating customers about the changes introduced by PSD2. They should provide clear and concise information about new authentication processes, data-sharing practices, and the benefits and risks associated with open banking. Customer awareness campaigns and educational materials can help build trust and ensure a smooth transition.


PSD2 brings a paradigm shift in the banking industry, emphasizing security, customer protection, and innovation. Banks must adapt to new regulatory requirements by implementing strong customer authentication, providing access to accounts for third-party providers, and ensuring compliance with reporting obligations.

By assessing the impact of PSD2, developing secure APIs, enhancing fraud detection measures, and establishing consent management frameworks, banks can achieve compliance and embrace the opportunities presented by open banking. Additionally, educating customers about the changes and benefits of PSD2 will foster transparency and build trust.

As banks navigate the path to PSD2 compliance, they can position themselves as trusted partners in the evolving digital financial ecosystem.