The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) will make its Digital Sandbox available permanently from 1 August 2023 following two successful pilots. The aim is to open up the platform to a broader range of innovative businesses, start-ups and data providers.
The sandbox is a testing environment that enables the FCA to support firms at the early stage of product development by enabling experimentation through proof of concepts. Alongside innovators, the permanent sandbox welcomes data providers to apply to list their data on the platform and gain traffic and insights on its usage.
Digital Sandbox participants will have permanent access to: high-quality datasets and APIs including over 200 synthetic, public or anonymised data sets and over 1,000 APIs to enable testing and validation of technology solutions; robust data security protection provided by an integrated development environment that allows experimentation while safeguarding data assets on the platform; a collaborative platform to facilitate diversity of thought, share learnings and foster an ecosystem between teams, observers and mentors; and an observation deck for interested parties such as regulators.
Applications to take part in the permanent Digital Sandbox can be made from 1 August 2023, must fall within one of these themes – banking, investment, lending, payments, insurance, pensions, wholesale buy-side, wholesale sell-side, and cross sectors. They will be assessed using criteria of in scope, genuine innovation, consumer benefit, readiness, and need for support, with the approval process taking a maximum of four weeks.
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