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PNC’s fight with Venmo highlights bigger issue over who owns your banking data


Over the past month, PNC customers have taken to Twitter to complain about not being able to connect to peer-to-peer payments app Venmo, which is owned by PayPal.

Instead of guiding them through how to connect to that app, the Pittsburgh-based bank, in some cases, suggested switching to bank-backed alternative Zelle. The app is owned by major Wall Street banks and competes directly with Venmo. In response, Venmo suggested that affected users should tweet PNC to “let me use the financial service apps I need!”

The disagreement underlines what can be a divisive topic of who owns consumers’ financial data — the banks or the consumers — and the difficulty of exporting that data in the United States.