*Research reveals that 24% of UK business leaders believe cross-border payments could help drive business profitability, amidst a period of complexity and confusion following the country’s exit from the European Union. As businesses – and the UK as a whole – start to establish new relationships and processes post-Brexit, financial technology (FinTech) solutions could provide an opportunity to streamline and improve efficiency, while helping to remain compliant with new regulations. ESET has explored the topic of financial technology and cybersecurity in its global FinTech research, surveying over 10,000 consumers across the UK, US, Australia, Japan and Brazil.
Throughout 2021, businesses in the UK will be dealing with both adapting to life outside the EU and the continuing effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. For around a third of senior managers (34%), one of the biggest priorities in this period is improving efficiency – and many may opt to implement FinTech solutions as a way to achieve this, with ‘ease of use’ being their perceived benefit. Some solutions, such as cross-border payments, seem to offer even greater prospects, with a quarter of business leaders (24%) believing they could boost profitability in this challenging situation.
Nearly two thirds of UK business leaders (59%) reported an intention for their company to increase investment in FinTech by some level in 2021-2022, with around one in eight (13%) expecting this investment to increase greatly. As the impact of Brexit includes increasing complexity of financial transactions between the UK and some of its closest trade partners, a significant focus of this investment could be streamlining the evolving economic processes that organisations are subject to. The majority of senior managers (58%) believe that FinTech solutions are easier to set up, configure, and use than traditional financial services, suggesting that their implementation could ease businesses through the transition to operating outside of the European Union.
“The findings show that organisations in the UK are becoming increasingly interested in FinTech and are looking to incorporate more solutions into their business processes. It is important that this interest does not outstrip awareness of the potential risks, and that new technologies are adopted with a cybersecurity-first approach,” commented Jake Moore, Cybersecurity Specialist at ESET. “When all the necessary precautions are taken, FinTech could provide useful tools to help businesses navigate Brexit-related changes – but without sufficient protection, it could instead make organisations more vulnerable to cyber attacks.”