Workshop N° 4 – Personal data and privacy in Fintech


As part of the series of online workshops around personal data protection launched by the Council of Europe in support of the Network of African Data Protection Authorities, the 4th workshop about "Personal data and privacy in Fintech" will take place on 03 February 2021.

‘Fintech’ is often described as a ‘revolution' that continues to displace more traditional forms of banking. It uses technology and behavioral data to provide a range of financial services especially to sections of society that are underserved by or that do not have access to more traditional forms of banking, for example in the informal economy and rural populations. Technology and in many cases, mobile phone ownership continue to drive Fintech adoption - in 2019 there were 520 million registered mobile money accounts across Africa alone.

Fintech, especially mobile Fintech in Africa has multiple use cases from mobile payments, money transfers and loans, to supporting micro-enterprise, to financial inclusion, to paying for electricity and water including via cryptocurrency. Fintech sits at the intersection of multiple regulation from banking, Anti-Money Laundering- AML / Know your customer- KYC, mobile money licenses, telecom law (including mandatory sim registration), identity law and even social protection law.  While Fintech provides opportunities it also carries risks to privacy and fundamental rights and freedoms, arising from the capture and mining of detailed behavioral data that may be used for reputation scoring for example, to the use of data brokers, to location privacy…

Thus, the workshop aims to explore and discuss key issues, challenges and considerations in the use of personal data in Fintech drawing from experiences in Africa and beyond. 

So what are the key considerations for data protection authorities? What lessons can be learnt to support data protection authorities across Africa? Is data protection law sufficient to address concerns and risks over the use of behavioral data for example? What is the lawful basis for using behavioral data – consent? Is regulatory oversight and enforcement effective across over complex Fintech ecosystems? To what degree has COVID-19 driven Fintech adoption and exacerbated issues?  What cross-border issues does Fintech create in regulating global or cross-border platforms and how can these be best addressed? This is a set of questions that this workshop will attempt to answer.
Speakers include:

  • Olumide BABALOLA is a practicing data protection, privacy and digital rights lawyer in Nigeria and a co-founder of the Digital Rights Lawyers Initiative (DRLI) that is committed to the promotion and protection of digital rights. 
  • Linda BONYO is a lawyer, the CEO and founder of 'The Lawyers Hub' (a Pan-African policy organization that focuses on providing innovative and technology driven solutions to policy, including internet governance, digital trade, digital ID, and digital inclusion.)  

Below is the workshop program:

GMT +1

3 February 2021


Opening session – Welcoming remarks and workshop goals

Marguerite Ouedraogo Bonane, Présidente du Réseau africain des autorités de protection des données et Présidente du CIL, Burkina Faso

Sophie Kwasny, Chef de l'Unité de protection des données, Conseil de l'Europe


Setting the scene

Patrick Walshe (Privacy Matters) et Sylvia Appiah (Information Governance Solutions), experts du Conseil de l’Europe


Through the lens of data protection - Fintech and privacy in Nigeria

Olumide Babalola is a practicing data protection, privacy and digital rights lawyer in Nigeria, and author on data protection and co-founder of the Digital Rights Lawyers Initiative.


Inclusive Fintech: An individual-centric approach to Fintech, data and privacy

Linda Bonyo is a lawyer and the CEO and founder of 'The Lawyers Hub' (a Pan-African policy organization and an advocate for privacy-conscious approaches to technology


A privacy-first approach to transforming financial services


Presentations by the DPA, members of the Network - Open discussions between Participants

Facilitated by the Council of Europe lead experts, Patrick Walshe and Sylvia Appiah 


Fin de l’atelier


For more information about the workshop: