# What is the Read/Write API Specification?

The Read/Write API specification describes a collection of RESTful APIs that enable authorised TPPs to access online payment accounts held at ASPSPs, securely, efficiently and with customer consent.

# Where can I find the latest version of API specifications?

Please see Read Write API Specifications

# Where can I find the timings for Implementing Open Banking Roadmap?

The timings are defined in the Open Banking Roadmap.

2018-2019 - Open-Banking-Revised-Roadmap-July-2018 (opens new window)

2020 - 2021 - Notice of approval of changes to the Agreed Timetable and Project Plan - May 2020 (opens new window)

These implementation timings apply to the CMA9, as required by the CMA Order.

# Are there any known issues in the latest version of Specifications?

Yes, there are and it is recommended to read the specifications in conjunction with the Known Specification Issues

# Where can I find the latest version of Swagger Specifications?

The Swagger Specification for Read/Write APIs can be downloaded from the following GitHub Repository:

https://github.com/OpenBankingUK/read-write-api-specs

# What APIs can an AISP access?

The Account and Transaction API Profile describes the flows and common functionality for the Accounts and Transaction API, which allows an Account Information Service Provider ('AISP') to:

  • Register an intent to retrieve account information by creating an "account access consent". This registers the data "permissions", expiration and historical period allowed for transactions/statements - that the customer (PSU) has consented to provide to the AISP; and

  • Subsequently, retrieve account and transaction data.

The links to the list of Account & Transaction APIs : Account & Transaction APIs

# What APIs can an CBPII access?

The Confirmation of Funds API Profile describes the flows and common functionality for the Confirmation of Funds API, which allows a Card Based Payment Instrument Issuer ('CBPII') to:

  • Register an intent to confirm funds by creating a "funds confirmation consent" resource with an ASPSP, for agreement between the PSU and ASPSP. This consent is a long lived consent, and contains the length of time (expiration date) the customer (PSU) would like to provide to the CBPII; and
  • Subsequently, make a request to confirm funds are available.
  • Funds can only be confirmed against the currency of the account.

This profile should be read in conjunction with a compatible Read/Write Data API Profile which provides a description of the elements that are common across all the Read/Write Data APIs, and compatible individual resources.

For more details refer to : Account & Confirmation of Funds API Profile

# How can the ASPSP inform the AISP that access has been revoked?

The OB solution supports the revocation of consent at the TPP dashboard and the revocation of access at the ASPSP dashboard.

When access is revoked at the ASPSP access dashboard by the PSU, the TPP can be notified as follows:-

  • Real-time/ Push Notifications: The functionality enables ASPSPs to notify AISPs in real-time (i.e. immediately) when a PSU revokes their access at their ASPSP dashboard or other account access changes events take place.
  • Aggregated polling / Pull Notifications: This enables the provision of notification of revocations from ASPSPs to AISPs, upon AISP request. It allows an AISP to request an aggregated set of access revocations and other account access events related to multiple access consents from multiple PSUs during a specific period.

For more details refer to: customer-experience-guidelines/ais-core-journeys/access-status-notifications-by-aspsps (opens new window)

# What APIs can an PISP access?

The Payment Initiation API Profile describes the flows and common functionality for the Payment Initiation API, which allows a Payment Initiation Service Provider ('PISP') to:

  • Register an intent to stage a payment-order consent.

  • Optionally confirm available funds for a payment-order (domestic immediate, international immediate and international scheduled (immediate debit) payments only.

  • Subsequently submit the payment-order for processing.

  • Optionally retrieve the status of a payment-order consent or payment-order resource .

For more details refer to : Payment Initiation API Profile

# Which payment-order types are supported by the PIS API?

  • Domestic payments.
  • Domestic scheduled payments.
  • Domestic standing orders.
  • International payments.
  • International scheduled payments.

# Are there different signing policies for Event Notifications?

The signing policy for any resource isn't dependent on the Swagger File. It is up to the ASPSP's implementation of the Events resource, e.g. Event Notification Message Signing and is similar to any other Read/Write API specification, other than the JWT's signature (JWS) which is sent in the HTTP body of the request, as opposed to a detached JWS sent in the HTTP header.

# What is the Event Notification API?

The Event Notification API Profile describes the flows and common functionality to allow a TPP to receive event notifications.

This covers a number of use cases, including:

  • Updates to the status of a payment initiation (e.g. when there are multiple authorisations required in the ASPSP interface).
  • Revocation of AISP access by the PSU in the ASPSP interface.

For more details refer to : event-notification-api-profile

# How can a TPP register with the ASPSP to receive event notifications?

The Event Notification Subscription API Profile and the Callback URL API Profile provide alternative mechanisms for TPPs to register for event notifications.

  • The Event Notification Subscription API allows TPPs to register to receive all or specific event types via the Real-Time Event Notification API and/or the Aggregated Polling API
  • The Callback URL API allows TPPs to register to receive aurn:uk:org:openbanking:events:resource-updateevent notification via the Real-Time Event Notification API.

# How can a TPP register with the ASPSP to receive event notifications?

The Event Notification Subscription API Profile and the Callback URL API Profile provide alternative mechanisms for TPPs to register for event notifications.

  • The Event Notification Subscription API allows TPPs to register to receive all or specific event types via the Real-Time Event Notification API and/or the Aggregated Polling API
  • The Callback URL API allows TPPs to register to receive aurn:uk:org:openbanking:events:resource-updateevent notification via the Real-Time Event Notification API.

# Are there separate swagger specifications for Real-time (push) notifications and aggregated polling?

Event Subscription, CallbackURLregistration and Aggregated Polling specifications are all hosted by the ASPSP, while the TPP hosts the endpoint to receivereal-time push notifications.

As of v3.1.3, there are four Swagger specification files, one for each Events Resource:s

# How should my redirect URIs be encoded?

Both ASPSPs and TPPs should format all URIs using URL encoding. Participants should accept all URLs which have been URL encoded. (see here (opens new window)).

# What length of URIs should be allowed for redirect

OBIE does not define a maximum URI length.

The URI limit is something that is enforced by your server and client. It is reasonable to assume URIs could be as much as 2048 characters, which is the lowest limit of any of the major, modern browsers.

Participants should be able to handle the URIs of unbounded length if they provide GET-based forms that could generate such URIs. In the event where the TPP has exceeded the maximum supported length, the ASPSP must return a 414 (Request-URI Too Long).

# What do we refer to as mandatory GET endpoints?

The GET endpoint enables the PISP to check the status of the payment consent resource.

The GET endpoints listed below are considered mandatory for implementation. This would be applicable irrespective of whether the response in both POST and the GET remains the same.

  • GET /domestic-scheduled-payments/{DomesticScheduledPaymentId}
  • GET /domestic-standing-orders/{DomesticStandingOrderId}
  • GET /international-scheduled-payments/{InternationalScheduledPayment}
  • GET /international-standing-orders/{InternationalStandingOrderPaymentId}

# How can ASPSPs provide relevant charges to a PISP?

The Open Banking Write specification enables the ASPSP to provide any relevant charges related to the payment order to the PISP in two ways:-

(a) When the PISP sets up the payment order, the ASPSP can populate relevant charges (including a breakdown) as part of the payment consent response (name of response which is returned to the PISP.

(b) When the PISP submits the payment order, the ASPSP can respond by including any relevant charges (including a breakdown) as part of the payment response, which is returned to the PISP.

For more details refer to : api-specifications/red-write-specs/latest/ (opens new window)

Domestic Payments v3.1.2

  • Domestic payment consent - response (xpath - OBWriteDomesticConsentResponse3/Data/Charges).
  • Domestic payment - response (xpath - OBWriteDomesticResponse3/Data/Charges).

International Payments v3.1.2

  • International payment consent - response (xpath - OBWriteInternationalConsentResponse3/Data/Charges).
  • International payment - response (xpath - OBWriteInternationalResponse3/Data/Charges).

# Can a PISP display an ASPSP's charges to the PSU?

The PISP could display any relevant ASPSP charges related to the payment order during the consent stage of their journey, however, this will be dependent on whether the ASPSP has shared these charges with the PISP as part of the payment consent response.

# Can an ASPSP display their charges to the PSU during authentication?

Yes, the ASPSP can provide any supplementary information related to the payment, like charges (if applicable) to the PSU as part of their authentication journey.

Please refer to the following example journeys in CEG:

  • International Payment Journey - CEG Checklist #9.
  • Domestic Payments - a/c selection @PISP (Supplementary Info) - Additional Information.

# What if a PISP does not provide the optional 'ChargeBearer' field?

If the PISP does not provide a charge bearer value in the payment consent request payload, and if this cannot be determined (e.g. in case of SEPA payment) then the ASPSP should not reject the payment, but it should seek to get this information from the PSU via the supplementary information screen as part of authentication journey.

# Which ChargeTypes would be used for a SEPA Credit Transfer or SWIFT payment?

Within the specified OBExternalPaymentChargeType1Code enum, the namespaced enumeration for charge types is not intended to be exhaustive, and ASPSPs can add their own enumerations.

# Can an ASPSP provide statements to an AISPs in non-JSON file format?

Yes, an ASPSP can provide a statement to the AISP using non JSON file format. The link to access this statement using a non JSON file format:

GET /accounts/{AccountId}/statements/{StatementId}/file

# What are the implementation timelines for a newly published specification or guidelines?

Please refer to the Operational Guidelines: Implementation of a new OBIE Standard

  • It is up to ASPSPs to take their own position of which version of each component of the Standard they chose to implement in order to meet both regulatory and commercial requirements.
  • OBIE recommends that where an ASPSP chooses to implement a new version of any component of the Standard, they should implement each new major version within six months, and each new minor version within three months of the Standard being published by OBIE.

ASPSPs should provide notification of any changes to TPPs at least three months prior to those changes taking effect.

# Do TPPs have to implement the s Dashboard?

While there is no regulatory requirement for the provision of a consent dashboard by TPPs, OBIE strongly encourages all TPPs to provide a consent dashboard to their customers to enable view and revoke on-going consents.

# Is OBErrorResponse1/Errors/Message mandatory, and what level of detail is expected?

This is considered a mandatory field and ASPSPs must include a description of the error that occurred. E.g., 'A mandatory field isn't supplied' or 'RequestedExecutionDateTime must be in future'

OBIE does not standardise this field and it is up to each ASPSP to determine the appropriate level of detail to provide an adequate description of the error that has taken place to the TPP.

TPPs will need to determine which error codes to implement depending on the relevant error code(s) applicable to them and their service offerings.

The ASPSP must mark the consent as 'Rejected' when the PSU does not complete the consent-authorisation flow.

The ASPSP must also set the status of the payment-order consent to Rejected, if the AuthorisationType requested by the PISP cannot be satisfied, after PSU Authentication. The ASPSP must respond back with an OAuth error response fields error specified as invalid_request and error_description containing an appropriate message.

# When should ASPSPs reject a Payment-Order?

An ASPSP must reject an authorization request when the underlying intent object is associated with a CutoffDateTime that has elapsed. The ASPSP must not issue an access token in such a situation. The ASPSP must set the status of the payment-order consent resource to “Rejected”.

# Can AISPs change the permission language?

The AISP must ensure they have business rules that manage the relationship between data clusters and product type. They must omit access to data clusters that are irrelevant to a product type, as well as their service offering. If an AISP requests a cluster of data that is irrelevant to the product type associated with the payment account e.g. Direct Debit cluster requested for a Savings Account product type, the ASPSP may provide that cluster as empty.

For more guidance, refer to customer-experience-guidelines/account-information-services/permissions-and-data-clusters/latest/ (opens new window)

# Is it mandatory to implement refresh_token-expires_at?

If the ASPSP issues a refresh token, the ASPSP must indicate the date-time at which the refresh token will expire in a claim named http://openbanking.org.uk/refresh_token_expires_at in the Id token (returned by the token end-point or user info end-point). Its value MUST be a number containing a NumericDate value, as specified in https://tools.ietf.org/html/rfc7519#section-2

If the ASPSP does not issue a refresh token, the ASPSP must not populate the http://openbanking.org.uk/refresh_token_expires_at the claim in the Id token.

If the ASPSP issues a refresh token that does not expire, the ASPSP must populate the claim named http://openbanking.org.uk/refresh_token_expires_at in the Id token with a value representing the number of seconds to 03:14:07 UTC on 19 January 2038 (end of UNIX epoch).

For more details refer to: read-write-data-api-profile.html#token-expiry-time (opens new window)

This relates to client registration that the TPP does with each ASPSP.

The OBIE Standard is silent on Client registration and De-registration. It is up to ASPSPs to decide their approach in alignment with FAPI and OpenId Connect.

# Is it possible to amend or revoke a standing order (SO) or scheduled payment (FDP)?

If a PSU has given consent to a PISP to initiate a SO or FDP, then the SO and FDP cannot be amended or cancelled via a PISP directly following payment initiation. However, it is expected that customers should be able to amend or cancel a SO or FDP in the domain of their ASPSP, provided that this functionality is available in the direct online channels.

# What types and lengths of account identification are supported?

UK.OBIE.SortCodeAccountNumber is specific to UK. The SchemeName field is namespaced, meaning the ASPSP/PISP may use a different scheme name, if it is not already defined in OBIE specifications.

The identification field is 256 characters long so you can add more than 14 characters if required.

# Does the ASPSP always have to redirect back to the TPP?

The OBIE Standard supports 2 methods of authentication: redirection and decoupled.

For redirection, OBIE's research has suggested that redirection screens are a useful part of the process, providing customer trust. The following reasons are noted:

They help customers navigate their online journey and inform them of what is going to happen next. They help create a clear sense of separation between the TPP’s domain and the ASPSP’s domain. For more details, please refer to Customer Experience Guidelines:

# What message should an ASPSP return when a TPP requests permissions to an endpoint that is not implemented?

The standards do not specify the response in this situation. ASPSPs may:

  • reject the account-access-consent with a status code of 400 and error code of UK.OBIE.Field.Invalid OR
  • process the request successfully.

ASPSPs must make documentation available to TPPs (e.g. on their developer portals) which should specify which 'Conditional' / 'Optional' endpoints and fields have been implemented.

# When a TPP calls the Party or Parties endpoint, will they always receive the PartyType attribute?

It is optional for the ASPSPs to provide the PartyType field as part of the Party or Parties endpoint.

ASPSPs must make documentation available to TPPs (e.g. on their developer portals) which should specify which 'Conditional' / 'Optional' endpoints and fields have been implemented.

# Is there a list of all ASPSPs participating in the Open Banking Ecosystem?

Together with UK Finance and FDATA, OBIE has developed and maintains a list of ASPSPs here: Transparency Calendar

This shows key information including: contact details, which directory is being used, and a link to a page maintained by each ASPSP showing further details of the APIs being implemented by each. While this list does not guarantee to include all UK ASPSPs, it is intended to be as comprehensive as possible.

# What error code should an ASPSP send back to a TPP if a wrong x-fapi-financial-id was sent in the request?

The x-fapi-financial-id header was required up until Version 3.1.1 of the OBIE Read-write API profile. ASPSPs that implement this version must reject an invalid request with a 403 (Forbidden).

The requirement for providing x-fapi-financial-id in the request header was removed from FAPI and subsequently removed from Version 3.1.2 of the Read/Write API Specification.

# Are File Payments supported in the Standard for both personal and business accounts?

File Payments allow a file of payment requests to be uploaded to an ASPSP for payment initiation. Implementation of this endpoint is 'Conditional' which means the ASPSP must implement if the same functionality is supported for their PSUs (which could be for Business and/or Personal accounts) on their existing online channels.

# How can we know if an ASPSP supports File Payment endpoint?

ASPSPs must make documentation available to TPPs (e.g. on their developer portals) to which 'Conditional' / 'Optional' endpoints and fields are implemented for any given implementation of the specification.

# Can ASPSPs create their own enumeration when required?

Yes, ASPSPs can create their own enumerations.

The OBIE Specification includes various fields of Enumerated data types, where either the values are fixed to an OBIE defined set of alternatives (i.e. Static Enumerations), or flexible with an initial OBIE defined set of alternatives, and ASPSPs can use/extend these alternatives (i.e. Namespaced Enumerations).

See : namespaced-enumerations (opens new window)

# Have any ASPSPs requested new values to be added to enumeration?

ASPSPs do not need to approach OBIE before adding new enumerated values. They are free to do so, when necessary.

# Does an AISP need to display OBIE defined data clusters and permission language in the UI?

While not a specific regulatory requirement, AISPs are strongly encouraged to clearly display the OBIE data clusters and permission language to the PSU as part of their consent journey.

# How can the ASPSP inform the AISP that access has been revoked?

The OB solution supports the revocation of consent at the TPP dashboard and the revocation of access at the ASPSP dashboard. When access is revoked at the ASPSP access dashboard by the PSU, the TPP can be notified as follows:-

  • Real-time/ Push Notifications: The functionality enables ASPSPs to notify AISPs in real-time (i.e. immediately) when a PSU revokes their access at their ASPSP dashboard or other account access changes events take place.
  • Aggregated polling / Pull Notifications: This enables the provision of notification of revocations from ASPSPs to AISPs, upon AISP request. It allows an AISP to request an aggregated set of access revocations and other account access events related to multiple access consents from multiple PSUs during a specific period.

For more details refer to : Customer Experience Guidelines - Access Status notifications by ASPSPs

# What Resource URI Path Structure should be used while implementing the Read Write API Specification v3.1.2?

If implementing Version 3.1.2, the major version is 3 and the minor version is 1. The last .2 indicates a patch release and must not be present in the URI path. In this case, the implementer must define the resource URI path as 3.1.

# What is the correct way of creating and passing ConsentId?

The PISP must begin a payment-order request by creating a payment-order consent resource through a POST operation. This will confirm the parameters of the consent agreed between the PSU and the PISP. At this stage, the consent is considered "staged" as the PSU would need to authenticate with their ASPSP. The ASPSP responds with a ConsentId. This is the intent-id used when initiating the authorisation code grant.

# What error should be returned if an account is in derogatory status (e.g. Fraud Stop)?

It is up to each ASPSP to decide whether to send a 403 or a 200 with an empty response, in consideration to relevant regulatory obligations e.g AML, where applicable.

A PISP must not create a payment-order consent ConsentId on a previous version and use it to create a payment-order resource in a newer version.

  • E.g., A PaymentId created in v1, must not be used to create a v3 DomesticPaymentId.

A PISP must not create a payment-order consent ConsentId on a newer version and use it to create a payment-order resource in a previous version.

  • E.g., A ConsentId created in v3, must not be used to create a v1 PaymentSubmissionId.

# Which error codes should be used when a TPP submits incorrect JSON (e.g. extra quotes, invalid date and time, etc)?

The ASPSP should respond with 400 (Bad Request) and the relevant Namespaced Enumeration.

Please see incomplete-or-malformed-request-payload (opens new window) and namespaced-enumerations (opens new window)

# Does a TPP need to return id_token_signed_response_alg if they only support code as response type?

No. The TPP need to return id_token_signed_response_alg only when the response type is code id_token. This is the algorithm that the TPP expects to sign the id_token if an id_token is returned.

# What are the different types of charge bearer codes supported in single immediate (domestic) payment?

The different types of charge bearers supported are:-

  • BorneByCreditor

  • BorneByDebtor

  • FollowingServiceLevel

  • Shared

See: https://openbankinguk.github.io/read-write-api-site3/v3.1.5/profiles/payment-initiation-api-profile.html#static-enumerations

# In the Transaction API, is the transaction amount field inclusive/exclusive of ChargeAmount?

The standard is silent on whether the amount is inclusive or exclusive of the charge. As a result, we cannot provide any specific direction on how these values should be computed.

However, you should take the following into account:

  1. A charge is not always borne by the customer - it could be borne by the other party (or even shared). Some business accounts could be set up so that all charges are borne by a “charges account” that is separate.

  2. The transaction history for the account returned by the APIs must be complete in and by itself. This means that if a separate charge line does not appear in the transactions, it can be safely assumed that the Amount includes the charge borne by the account holder. This could be any value from zero to the charge amount due to shared charging situations.

  3. If the charge is not included in the transaction line itself, it must appear as a separate line where it is non-zero.

# Does an ASPSP need to support all variants of DateTime format as per ISO 8601?

An ASPSP must accept all valid ISO-8601 formats including its permitted variations (e.g. variations in how the time zone is defined, dates with or with a seconds or milliseconds part etc.) in API requests from TPPs.

# What if an ASPSP is not able to support functionality or an attribute in the payload. Should the ASPSP reject the request from the TPP?

When an ASPSP receives a payment order that they cannot process (and it is in parity with their online channels), the ASPSP could reject such a payment order. ASPSPs must make documentation available to TPPs (e.g. on their developer portals) which should specify which 'Conditional' / 'Optional' endpoints and fields have been implemented.

Examples include:

  1. setting up a standing order with a frequency that they do not support,
  2. making a Forex payment with a currency they do not support or indeed, and
  3. specifying a date-time that is not supported.

# How many days of transactions are allowed for credit card transactions in the transactions API aligning to the regulation?

It is up to each ASPSP to be at parity with their online channels and also seek their own legal guidance.

# In the event subscription API, should the single event subscription be the Organisation ID or Software ID?

This should be the ClientID.

# Should the 'offers' resource be used only for the specific account (e.g. Credit Card Limit Increases) as opposed to all possible offers a customer could see online (e.g. a pre-approved loan offer based on their credit card payment history and credit file)?

The offers end-point arose from the interpretation that the API interface should make available whatever information is available to the PSU in the online channel.

It is up to each ASPSP to determine what information needs to be made available through these end-points, based on individual regulatory considerations.

The standard specifically provides for two endpoints - a “bulk” endpoint and an account-specific endpoint for offers.

# Should the offers endpoint be for the specific account or all possible offers a customer could see online?

The offers endpoint is used by an AISP to retrieve the offers available for a specific AccountId or to retrieve the offers detail in bulk for all accounts that the PSU has consented to. It is up to each ASPSPs to determine what information needs to be made available through these end-points, based on individual regulatory considerations.

# For message signing, what should be the input payload for the signature (e.g. HTTP body, parsed JSON, canonicalised JSON etc)?

The standard states The HTTP body would form an un-encoded payload as defined in RFG 7797

The only workable option is to use a buffer or character array that represents the HTTP body.

# Should the trust anchor in detached JWS Signatures in Sandbox be openbanking.org.uk or openbankingtest.org.uk?

The standard only specifies the trust anchor value to be used in production scenarios when using the OBIE Directory. The value openbanking.org.uk should be used to identify the OBIE Directory as the trust anchor.

The standard does not specify the trust anchor value to be used when the OBIE Sandbox Directory is used as a trust anchor.

The model bank that is commissioned by the OBIE will accept either openbanking.org.uk or openbankingtest.org.uk as tan values.

# Why does the OBIE standard not use standard security headers such as Content-Security-Policy, X-XSS-Protection etc ? Can an ASPSP add these headers to their responses?

The APIs are not meant to be surfaced up in a browser directly and it does not make sense to include those headers in the context of these standards.

ASPSPs may add additional headers in their responses. The standard does not prohibit this behaviour. The TPP may ignore such headers.

On the other hand, if the ASPSPs expect a specific header to be set by TPPs in the request, that would be possibly non-compliant behaviour.

# In the context of AIS, is it possible to have a longer-lived token over 90 days if only the balance is read?

Currently, under PSD2/RTS, SCA needs to be performed at least every 90 days by the ASPSP. This means that even if only balance is being accessed, SCA will need to be performed if more than 90 days have passed since the last SCA was applied by the ASPSP.

Payment-consents tokens are meant to be “short-lived” and should be expected to last for a few minutes at most. The RTS Art. 10 exemption which supports the 90-day access token functionality applies to AIS only.

# How long are transactions available via the transactions API after the bank account is closed?

This will be dependant on whether and to what extent this information is available to the PSU in the direct channels. This will be up to each ASPSP to determine based on relevant regulatory obligations.

# Can you give a few examples to illustrate the use of InstructedAmount for an International Payment?

Scenario Debit Account denomination Currency of Transfer /InstructedAmount/Currency
Instruction that creditor should receive 100 EUR GBP EUR EUR
Instruction that creditor should receive EUR equivalent of 100 GBP GBP EUR GBP
Transfer 100 GBP to GBP denominated account held in another country. GBP GBP GBP

# Which error codes should the ASPSP use while responding back to the TPP in case of an error?

The ASPSP should send the appropriate response depending on which spec applies to the end-point that is being called.

For eg: When there is an error in relation to a token endpoint which is defined in OIDC and OAuth2, the error responses should comply with the OAuth2 / OIDC format.

# Is it acceptable for an ASPSP to issue 302 redirects during the authorization code grant flow to the PSU’s user agent?

OpenID Connect, OAuth2 and FAPI do not define the behaviour of the AS between the time that the authorization code grant has started and its end (signalled by a redirect to the TPP in most cases)

For the journey to be a “compliant” OIDC/OAuth2 journey, there are a number of boxes to tick:

  1. The TPP constructs the authorization URL and issues it to the PSU’s browser. The URL should contain query parameters and request objects that are OIDC compliant. The URL should be the authorization_server in the ASPSP’s .well-known. The redirect_uri parameter should be the TPP’s registered URI.

  2. Once the PSU’s browser follows the redirect, the flow can be pretty much whatever the ASPSP wants to implement. The CEGs provide some standards on what those journeys should look like, but no technical constraints on redirects etc that take place.

  3. That journey MUST end with the PSU browser receiving a 30x Redirect response. The redirect must be to the redirect_uri in the query parameter in #1 above. This URL must have OIDC/OAuth2 format query or hashbang parameters (e.g. code, error, error_description, nonce(?) etc

Practically, some browsers will cause issues with a TOO_MANY_REDIRECTS error - but the standard is silent on that.

# What does each of the Balance types mean? Does an ASPSP have to provide specific balance types in its response?

The enumeration for the Balance Type field is based on the ISO 20022 definition for the field. When we base data structures on an underlying standard, we do not generally provide additional descriptions on the usage, unless there is an OBIE specific deviation.

The ASPSPs are free to determine which balance types they should publish. The general expectation is that an ASPSP should provide the same information through its APIs as it does through its online channels. In situations where the more than one Balance Type could be used to describe the balance provided by the ASPSP, it is for the ASPSP to determine the appropriate type to be used.

# As an ASPSP, do we need to support a specific file type for File Payments?

ASPSPs need to provide the ability for PISPs to initiate the same payment types, which can be initiated by the PSU on their online channels. The ASPSPs can define their own namespaced enumeration https://openbankinguk.github.io/read-write-api-site3/v3.1.6/profiles/read-write-data-api-profile.html#enumerations to list their custom file types.

# As a TPP, do we need to support a specific file type for File Payments at an ASPSP?

Each ASPSPs will have their own existing legacy and proprietary file formats which enables the PSU to upload on the ASPSPs existing channels. The same should be made available via PISP.

# Can you explain what is included in InterimAvailable balance type for credit cards?

As per ISO definition, Available balance calculated in the course of the account servicer's business day, at the time specified, and subject to further changes during the business day. The interim balance is calculated on the basis of booked credit and debit items during the calculation time/period specified.

For e.g.: A credit card that has 30 GBP worth of transactions and a 100 GBP credit limit.

InterimBooked balance would be 30 GBP Dr.

InterimAvailable balance would be 70 GBP Cr (with a CreditLine.included = true and value of 100 GBP).

We would suggest you refer to https://www.iso20022.org/standardsrepository/type/BalanceType10Code for more definitions on the different balance types.

# When a payment is refunded, what should be the captured in the Creditor and Agent fields of the Refund block?

The Refund block must contain the refund account details of the party being refunded.

For eg: If Mr X has made a purchase using ASPSP1 Bank and needs to be refunded then,

Refund.Creditor = Mr X.

Refund.Agent= ASPSP1 details.

Refund.Account= Mr X account details that were used to make the purchase originally.

# Are any of these attributes available for Credit Cards & Overdraft information?

  1. Interest Rates (APRs) for Credit Cards and Overdraft.

  2. Balance subject to Purchase APR on credit cards. (so we can separate out balance transfers at 0%)

  3. Bill Due Date for Credit Cards.

  4. The minimum payment amount for Credit Cards.

The R/W specification enables ASPSPs to provide this information (as per the endpoints) outlined below, however, it is up to the individual ASPSP to determine whether to populate this based on their relevant regulatory considerations:

  1. Interest Rates (APRs) for Credit Cards and Overdraft- Provided in Products endpoint.

  2. Balance subject to Purchase APR on credit cards. (so we can separate out balance transfers at 0%) - StatementInterest on the statements end-point.

  3. Bill Due Date for Credit Cards - StatementDateTime on statements end-point.

  4. The minimum payment amount for Credit Cards - StatementAmount on statements endpoint.

# How do we know whether ASPSP supports PAIN file format for file/bulk payments?

ASPSPs are expected to make documentation available of the file formats & fields they support on their developer portals for the TPPs for any given implementation of the specification.

It is not considered mandatory for ASPSPs to implement this format.

# What would be the appropriate ErrorCode in case the request contains a malformed body, e.g. incorrect JSON?

The closest would be UK.OBIE.Field.Invalid

If the JSON could be parsed, but some fields could not be validated, the error message should include the field (or if possible, fields) that were invalid.

# For the hybrid/authorization code grant, can you please provide a more complete list of the scenarios in which an ASPSP should not redirect back to the TPP, but should display an error page instead ?

The question arises from the following statement in the CEG:

The authorisation request may be malformed when submitted by the TPP. For >example, it may include an invalid redirection URL, invalid parameters, invalid signature on the request object etc. OAuth2 and OIDC define a whole list of potential errors. These are abnormal situations which indicate a significant technical issue at the TPP’s end or even an attacker trying to act as a TPP. For safety (and as per the standards) the ASPSP must not redirect the PSU back to the TPP in such situations. The ASPSP must display an error message and stop the execution at this point. It is at the ASPSPs’ discretion to display to the PSU the message they find most appropriate for this error case, however an error message must be displayed. In this situation, TPPs do not receive a response back from the ASPSPs about the malformed authorisation request. Therefore, TPPs are not able to display any message to the PSU in this situation.

We would like to clarify that the CEG does not suggest that ASPSPs implement behaviour that is contrary to OAuth2, OIDC or FAPI.

At the core of this requirement, is the statement in OAuth2 - https://tools.ietf.org/html/rfc6749#section-4.1.2.1

If the request fails due to a missing, invalid, or mismatching redirection URI, or if the client identifier is missing or invalid, the authorization server SHOULD inform the resource owner of the error and MUST NOT automatically redirect the user-agent to the invalid redirection URI.

In addition to that, ASPSPs may rely on OAuth Security BCP, https://tools.ietf.org/html/draft-ietf-oauth-security-topics-15#section-4.9.2 :

Based on its risk assessment, the ASPSP needs to decide whether it can trust the redirect URI and SHOULD only automatically redirect the user agent if it trusts the redirect URI. If the URI is not trusted, the AS MAY inform the user and rely on the user to make the correct decision.

Each ASPSP must reach its own reasoned decision. It may consider, for example, whether a missing, malformed or incorrectly signed request should be considered as a risky request.

# Rate Limiting

# Can the ASPSPs implement rate-limiting?

While rate-limiting is supported by the specifications, ASPSPs will need to consider the factors below in line with relevant regulatory consideration when making a decision on an appropriate limit:

  • rate limiting is conducted in a manner that reasonable, non-discriminatory and not an obstacle to the TPPs.

  • provides at least the same level of availability/performance as existing PSU interfaces.

  • do not apply any measures to induce TPPs to adopt a new version of the APIs where rate limit is applied to an older version and better performance is provided on a newer version.

ASPSPs must make documentation available to TPPs (e.g. on their developer portals) and clearly publish rate limits for each version.

ASPSPs should respond with 429 - Too many requests status code if they rate limit requests from TPPs (as specified here - https://openbankinguk.github.io/read-write-api-site3/v3.1.6/profiles/read-write-data-api-profile.html#http-status-codes)

# What is the expected response when an AISP tries to access AIS endpoints for a closed or switched account?

The standards define the behaviour that is expected here.

From Version 3.1.6, the ASPSPs may also return a flag to indicate the account’s switch status as part of the response to the accounts end-point.

If a PSU has consented to multiple accounts and then closes one or more, but not all of the accounts in the consent, the ASPSP should allow continued access to the remaining accounts.

# As an ASPSP can we revoke access to TPPs following an account switch/closure? Does this conflict with the requirement of v3.1.6 to provide CASS status back to TPP?

It is up to each ASPSP to determine a suitable approach in relation to how to treat active AISP access to a closed account, taking into consideration the applicable regulatory requirements. They should be viewed as separate to the requirement to provide a CASS status message back to the AISP.

# What should be the ASPSPs response, when the AIS tries to access a PSU’s account that is switched out to another ASPSP and the ASPSP is not able to provide the switching status as it may not be available?

In this instance, it is recommended that ASPSPs consider the creation of their own namespaced enumeration and return that.

# Should AccountId be unique and immutable?

Yes, AccountId is a unique and immutable identifier used to identify the account resource.

The value should be immutable across time - not just immutable for a given consent.

# How many months/years backdated should transaction history be provided via AISP by the ASPSP?

This should be the same period/length of time for which the information is available to the PSU when accessing their payment account in the direct channels.

# FAPI

# Is it mandatory to include the scope claim when calling the token end-point as part of an authorization_code grant?

No, it is not mandatory for the client to include the 'scope' in the token request.

# As an ASPSP, which security certification should I request from Open ID if I see multiple types for FAPI?

ASPSP must select FAPI IDP certification.

# Which scope element should the TPPs use when requesting token (grant type=authorization_code)?

TPPs should follow FAPI guidelines for the scope element.

# What should the ASPSP do if the TPP omits the scope parameter when requesting authorization?

The authorization server must either process the request using a pre-defined default value or fail the request indicating an invalid scope.

# Is it compliant for a PSU to be redirected within a redirect in a redirect/hybrid grant?

For the journey to be a “compliant” OIDC/OAuth2 journey, there are a number of boxes to tick:

The TPP constructs the authorization URL and issues it to the PSU’s browser. The URL should contain query parameters and request objects that are OIDC compliant. The URL should be the authorization_server in the ASPSP’s .well-known. The redirect_uri parameter should be the TPP’s registered URI.

Once the PSU’s browser follows the redirect, the flow can be pretty much whatever the ASPSP wants to implement. The CEGs provide some standards on what those journeys should look like, but no technical constraints on redirects etc that take place.

Finally, that journey MUST end with the PSU browser receiving a 30x Redirect response. The redirect must be to the redirect_uri in the query parameter in #1 above. This URL must have OIDC/OAuth2 format query or hashbang parameters (e.g. code, error, error_description, nonce(?) etc

Practically, some browsers will cause issues with a TOO_MANY_REDIRECTS error - but the standard is silent on that. It is likely that old / non-evergreen browsers may cause some issues.

# Can refresh token be issued without an HoK mechanism to avoid impacts on member and would it be in compliance with FAPI?

# CIf a refresh token is issued with MTLS HoK, would it force the PSU to re-authenticate? Would this be an acceptable user Journey?

When using a refresh token, there should be no expectation on the PSU to re-authenticate each time they access token is renewed. The PSU should only be required to re-authenticate with their ASPSP within a 90 day period, and in this instance, TPPs are expected to use the “refreshing AISP access” journey in the CEGs.

The certificate binding mechanism with RFC-8705 does allow this to be implemented correctly.

The method for certificate binding is defined in https://tools.ietf.org/html/rfc8705#section-7.1. (Note that we do not have public clients and Section 4 of RF-8705 will not be applicable)

Effectively, a refresh token is not certificate bound directly but bound indirectly through the client. The client, in turn, needs to authenticate with the token endpoint using a strong method of authentication (tls_client_auth or private_key_jwt).

If using private_key_jwt, the signature is based on a key pair in the client’s JWKS registered with the ASPSP. No certificates are involved. Done.

If using tls_client_auth, the certificate is validated by comparing with tls_client_auth_subject_dn - not the certificate fingerprint. This would allow the TPP to make a call to the token endpoint with the new certs with their current refresh token. The new access token would be bound to the new cert. Done.

# Is it acceptable for an ASPSP to have multiple authorization servers? How should these be discoverable?

ASPSPs may have multiple AS and RS (e.g. to serve different brands and products). However, for ASPSPs that use the OBIE directory, these must be discoverable through the directory.

Furthermore, the use of additional authorization servers should not result in invalid or incorrectly formed OIDC discovery documents.

# Is there any guidance on how long in advance of being FAPI complaint ASPSPs should send out notice?

SCA - RTS, Article 30(4) contemplates that ASPSPs must give TPPs a minimum of three months’ notice of any change to the technical specification of their interface change except for emergency situations.

For more details refer to https://standards.openbanking.org.uk/operational-guidelines/change-and-communication-management/changes-to-an-aspsps-infrastructure-configuration-or-software/latest/.

# Can the same Authorization endpoint be used repeatedly while it is not authorized by PSU or is there any time limitation to use the endpoint?

There are no specific constraints in the OIDC and FAPI standards around the expected behaviour of hitting an authorization URL multiple times.

FAPI requires that the call has a signed request. The request object must have an exp and nbf claim as stipulated here. This would limit the validity period for an authorization URL.

# As a TPP, when going through an authorization code grant, is the request object required even if I am not using a hybrid flow?

An ASPSP that is compliant with FAPI will require the use of a signed request object. This is a FAPI requirement.

# OIDC Discovery

The OpenID Connect Discovery RFC is the specification that defines the structure and content of the OIDC .well-known end-point.

The document is meant to be “discoverable” by web-finger and by a static URL and should always be available at a URL that can be pre-determined.

For example, the discovery document for the issuer example.com must be available at /.well-known/openid-configuration

  1. GET /.well-known/openid-configuration HTTP/1.1
  2. Host: example.com

Subsequently, the discovery document that is returned must have example.com specified as the issuer URL.

issuer
REQUIRED. URL using the https scheme with no query or fragment component that the OP asserts as its Issuer Identifier. If Issuer discovery is supported (see Section 2 ), this value MUST be identical to the issuer value returned by WebFinger. This also MUST be identical to the iss Claim value in ID Tokens issued from this Issuer.

Additionally, the authorization_endpoint specified must point to the OP’s authorization server. Note that there is no stipulated relationship between the URL for the authorization_endpoint and the issuer.

authorization_endpoint
REQUIRED. URL of the OP's OAuth 2.0 Authorization Endpoint [OpenID.Core].

(If the authorization endpoint supports MA-TLS and this end-point is available at a different URI, then RFC 8705 Section 9.2 registers mtls_endpoint_aliases.authorization server as a field in the discovery document.)

# Issues noted in the ecosystem

The following have been observed by the OIDC FAPI compliance tests in the ecosystem. There are incorrect configurations and are non-compliant with the OIDC discovery specification:

  1. Some ASPSPs issue a discovery document where the issuer field does not match the discovery URL from which the document was retrieved.

  2. Some ASPSPs have one or more authorization servers (e.g. when supporting multiple brands) that are not discoverable through the discovery document.

A checklist for correct implementations:

  1. ASPSPs must issue a discovery document for their authorization server.

  2. The ASPSP’s issuer URL when suffixed with /.well-known/openid-configuration must return the discovery document.

  3. The discovery document issuer field must have the same value as the ASPSP’s issuer URL.

  4. The ASPSP’s authorization server must be listed in the authorization_server field

  5. The ASPSP’s authorization server field may be optionally listed in the mtls_endpoint_aliases.authorization server field.

  6. If the ASPSP has multiple authorization servers, each authorization server must be discoverable through a separate discovery document. Each discovery document must meet the criteria above.

  7. ASPSPs that use the OBIE directory should register each authorization server on the OBIE directory with its corresponding discovery end-point.

# VRP

*Where can I find the latest version of VRP specifications?

Version 3.1.9 of specifications can be found here → Variable recurring payments API profile v3.1.9 (opens new window)

# Does VRP payment support standing order/future dated payment?

The sequence diagram Variable recurring payments API profile v3.1.9 (opens new window) is generic. At present only single immediate payments are supported in the specifications, standing orders and forward dated payments are not supported.

# Is the Data.Debtor block to be provided by the ASPSP in the response block optional?

Data.Debtor block is optional and outside the initiation block. In scenarios where account selection is done by the PSU during authentication, the ASPSP must be able to update the Data.Debtor block with the debtor details after successful authorisation. This will enable the PISP to make a GET call to get the debtor account details to make future payments using the VRP consent.

# Where can I find namespaced enumerations for VRP?

You can find all the namespaced enumerations for VRP here → Namespaced Enumerations - v3.1.9 (opens new window)

# Does VRP support refunds? If yes, wherein the specs can we find this option?

PISP can request refund information by indicating yes/no in Domestic VRP consents - v3.1.9 (opens new window) Data.ReadRefundAccount

The actual refund details will be provided by ASPSP in Domestic VRPs - v3.1.9 (opens new window) Data.Refund

# Why is the FundsConfirmationId max length 40?

FundsConfirmationId - is 40 characters as it is just an identifier and a UUIDv4 (36-38 characters) which is used in modern systems would fit in that size.

ValidFromDateTime is an optional field which means if not provided the consent start date is when the consent is provided to the PISP by the PSU and successful authentication has taken place at the ASPSP. It must not be backdated because the PSU is only giving consent at that point. However, it could be a future date.

# Can ValidToDateTime be left blank?

ValidToDateTime can be left blank which means the validity of the consent is indefinite.

*Should the ValidToDateTime be populated by either the PISP or ASPSP when the consent is revoked?

No consent parameters remain unchanged and so does ValidToDateTime even after the expiry of the consent.

# Is there an expectation that ValidFromDateTime and ValidToDateTime must start at a specific time and does that need to be included in the pro-rata calculation?

Refer to specs section - OBDomesticVRPControlParameters - Domestic VRP consents - v3.1.9 (opens new window)

The time element of the date should be disregarded in computing the date range and pro-rating.

No, this was introduced in v3.18 of the specifications but has been removed in v3.1.9 of the specifications. Once consent is expired, the PISP will not be able to access the PSU’s account to initiate payment orders however the status of the resource remain unchanged.

No, this was introduced in v3.18 of the specifications but has been removed in v3.1.9 of the specifications. Once consent is revoked by the PSU at the PISP, the PISP will need to ensure the DELETE endpoint is called to inform the ASPSP that consent is revoked. The ASPSP must delete the resource and respond to subsequent GET requests with an HTPP status of 400.

# Can an ASPSP provide a specific status reason if the VRP/sweeping payment cannot be processed due to asynchronous check failure?

No, but this is being considered.

Yes. Reference is an optional field in the VRP consent which means if it is provided, then it has to be provided in the CoF check call and the ASPSP can reject CoF request if the reference does not match.