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DEVELOPMENT, 7 MIN READ

FinTech Apps and Gaps,
or Why FINANCIAL SERVICES Testing Matters



FINTECH APPS AND GAPS,
OR WHY FINANCIAL SERVICES TESTING MATTERS

DEVELOPMENT, 7 MIN READ
ALEXANDRA LOZOVYUK
VITALIY MIHAYILYUK

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FinTech products have multiple high-level risks, where people put their sensitive information and money on the line. It's an area where serious errors might be costly in every sense.

So, how to develop and support a financial platform without wasting resources? (Spoiler: the secret's in strong testing).

In this article, you'll find relevant statistics, real-life cases, and a step-by-step JavaScript API testing guide prepared by Freshcode QA engineer.

1. Visa and TSB Fails: Learn Lessons From Elders TO AVOID MISTAKES

Software failures that happen to big FinTech players sometimes are the best starter for other financial businesses to make sure their testing processes are set right.

Such cases show how vulnerable the financial sector really is, even if you are a FinTech Titan. We will not consider accounting and auditing frauds, shuffling money, or conflicts of interest. Just a short timeline of notable cases where programming error happens.
In 2012 Knight's Capital Group lost $460 million per 45 minutes because of incorrect deployment of trading algorithms on one of Knight's production servers.
In 2017, Provident Financial lost 66% of its share price because a new IT system was full of bugs.
More than five million transactions across Europe failed during Visa's 10-hour outage in 2018.
TSB, the British bank, made headlines for the wrong reasons with a cataclysmic IT migration failure in 2018. It shifted customers to a new IT platform before it had been fully tested. As a result, nearly 1.9 million TSB customers were locked out of their accounts.
TSB's parent company had "cut corners" with critical IT testing, "running tests on only one of TSB's two new data centers" and hiding this fact, according to TSB's former CEO Paul Pester
Unfortunately, TSB hit again by IT failure in 2019, delaying customer wages. So, no one is immune from mistakes. But everyone can protect themselves and their clients as much as possible using development and pre-development tools.

Probably each case we've highlighted could be avoided by proper and timely QA testing.

The financial ecosystem is perceived to be fickle, not without reason. Data storage, transfer, and privacy have been a growing source of concern for years. For instance, it has proven to be a hurdle for the open banking reforms in the United Kingdom.

As you can see on the chart below, a financially motivated data breach is accounting for more than half of all threat types. So, it's not hard to guess financial applications are primarily in the crosshairs.
fintech app development
As per Edelman Trust Barometer 2020, 64% of people on average trust banks, insurers, and wealth managers while only 47% say the same for P2P and digital payments firms, 49% for digital wealth and robo-advisory companies, and 48% for blockchain and crypto platforms.

There is a number of laws and guidelines (Anti-Money Laundering, Payments Service Directive, etc) that fintech companies should make special room for. In spite of this, consumers are often reluctant to share personal data with fintech applications.

So the key task for marketers is to gain consumers' trust via quality Fintech software development approaches.

2. FinTech Trends and forecasts in 2021 AND BEYOND

No doubt, the global fintech marketplace is a colossal digital-scape today. Global investments in financial startups amounted to 10,631 billion in 2020 and it's the largest amount since mid-2018.

As per Statista.com, in February 2020, there were:

  • 8,775 Fintech startups in the Americas

  • 7,385 Fintech startups in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa

  • 4,765 Fintech in Asia Pacific region

Different business sectors benefit from the FinTech solutions in a number of ways. For example, technology-based PropTech platforms can facilitate real estate leasing and help to diversify the lender base. Let's just say that Peer-to-peer (P2P) (digital lending) is expected to rise to US$1000 billion in 2025 ( was worth US$3.5 billion in 2013) in accordance with Statista research.

You can find some key figures of IBM 2020 research below. It's just a silent and meaningful way to prove why businesses need a strong security shield of skilled engineers, testers, and cybersecurity specialists.

fintech statistics 2021 app development
By 2022, mobile transactions are projected to grow by 121% in accordance with CACI Limited research. This will eventually comprise 88% of all banking transactions. This echoes eMarketer analysis, which stated that almost 78% of the US millennial population will become digital banking users by 2022.

When financial processes become so personalized and hand-held, full and multi-level test covering is not desirable, it's vital. Just a matter of life and death of your FinTech product.

So, where user's money and personal data are at risk, QA comes in to save the day.

3. Top Notch Financial App Wanted: Needs and Benefits

The FinTech system as an application subpart or an integrated service is essential for today's digital platforms. It makes it easier for the customer to get through the financing processes making them fast, intuitive, and convenient.

Such platforms deliver a wide range of services, including banking, mobile payments, investment, equity funding, budgeting, and many more. First and foremost they gain trust via safety, functionality, advanced features, and ongoing customer support with 24/7 money access.

In particular, today's Fintech app must be able to handle:

  • Multi-tier functionalities
  • Simultaneous, efficient and fast transactions
  • Large-scale integrations
  • Real-time processing
  • Data confidentiality
  • Security threats
  • Large storage systems
  • Risk management
  • … to be continued

At the same time, the code should be reli-, maintain-, port- and reusable.

To avoid endless "day one" app patches as if paying customers became beta testers, companies employ outsourcing or in-house skilled QA teams to address them before the products reach the market.

Need Help Developing a FinTech App?
Our team will help achieve all business goals

4. HOW TO TEST FinTECH application AND WHY DO YOU NEED IT

Real QA guru minimizes financial and brand impacts of a data breach which is unforgiving in the FinTech market. QA can even save an app, as 80% of customers will delete an application if it's not meeting expectations. Losing 80% of mobile users might be normal but can you afford it? That's why lack of testing could derail the plan for a healthy retention curve.

And when the QA role is neglected or the QA engineer is not experienced enough — the error happens.

You can see that incident response testing is one top of the list in the chart below. And that is not an honorable primacy.

fintech development
There are other test-related reasons in the list of key factors on the cost of a data breach. It proves one more time the importance of Quality Assurance that reaches far beyond bug fixes. It's also about:

  • checking how data is written in the database, how it's encrypted, and how different services communicate with each other (the main issue in API development)
  • running penetration tests at every stage of the SDLC, that uses faux attacks on app and detects potential vulnerabilities for patching them up with attack-resistant code
  • automated E2E solutions with tools and libraries like Selenium, Protractor, Cypress, Cucumber/Specflow, BrowserStack, etc.
  • regulatory compliance check

fintech business development
Click on the image to enlarge
QA specialists are an integral part of the software development team analyzing project specifications before one line of code is even written.

Such pre-development involvement reduces the risk of scope creep and simplifies architecture by the combo of manual and automated testing, including:

  • Web app test automation
  • Mobile app test automation
  • Desktop app test automation
  • Continuous testing
  • Performance and load testing
  • Security testing
  • API testing

Let's go with the last one in more detail.
Get an MVP for your startup in 6 weeks


5. HOW TO USE FINTECH APIs - Reasons & Benefits

API testing implies checking integration with third-party systems and verifying the business logic layer of the app.

Starting a FinTech business means a need to use open-source APIs to easily join hands with financial giants. Public APIs precipitates сollaborations between financial startups and big players in the financial market. Although they are an effect rather than the cause, nevertheless, it's a great business opportunity for the financial services industry.

Case in point, the next API types made lives simpler for users a lot:

  • Payment Processing APIs – allow merchants to accept multi-modal payments

  • Lending Program APIs – automate loan issuing workflows

  • Regulation Technology (RegTech) APIs – offer app owners options to verify users


6. API testing using JavaScript: USE CASE

Tests setting up is not the easy part. Today, we want to share the setup our QA engineer created while he was working on the e-banking app development.

STAGE 1

Initializing the tested Node.js project, adding dependencies that will be used.
1. Init new project / create package.json


npm init

2. Install dependencies

npm i supertest chance jest http-status-codes --save
3. Install devDependencies

npm i @types/chance @types/jest @types/node @types/supertest typescript
4. Update for typescript config file

tsconfig.json
{
"compilerOptions": { "module": "CommonJS", "lib": ["es2019"], "target": "es5", "noImplicitAny": false, "skipLibCheck": true, "experimentalDecorators": true, "emitDecoratorMetadata": true, "sourceMap": true, "outDir": "dist", "baseUrl": ".", "paths": { "*": ["node_modules/*"] } }, "include": ["src/**/*"]
}
STAGE 2

Sending requests to the tested service.
1. Processing server responses
"it ('[GET /paymenttemplates/17] - PaymentTemplate description should be started with ""Ipsum""', async () => {
const response = await client()
.get('/paymenttemplates/17')
.set('Accept', 'application/json')
.expect(StatusCodes.OK)
});
STAGE 3

Testing different responses (GET / POST / PUT / DELETE).
1. /GET - All Payment Templates
const response = await supertest("https://<secret>/api/v1/")
.get('/paymenttemplates')
.set('Accept', 'application/json')
.expect('Content-Type', /json/)
.expect(StatusCodes.OK);
expect(response.body.length).toBeGreaterThanOrEqual(50);
2. /POST - Create new Payment Template

const response = await supertest("https://<secret>/api/v1/")
.post('/paymenttemplates')
.send(params)
.expect(StatusCodes.OK);
delete params['publishDate'];
console.log("Body ", response.body)
//Check response object
expect(response.body).toMatchObject
(expect.objectContaining(params));
//Check response previously added title
expect(response.body.title).toEqual(params.title)

3. /DELETE - Remove a Payment Template with id=99



const response = await supertest("https://<secret>/api/v1/")
.delete(`/paymenttemplates/99`)
.expect(StatusCodes.OK);
console.log("Del", response.body)
expect(response.body).toMatchObject({});
4. /CONTRACT - Check contract of getting Payment Templates



const response = await supertest("https://<secret>/api/v1/")
.get('/paymenttemplates/1')
.set('Accept', 'application/json')
.expect(StatusCodes.OK);
Object.keys(responsePaymenttemplate).forEach((k) =>
expect(response.body).toHaveProperty(k),
);
Run test specs - "npm run test"

When this is accomplished, you can run test scripts for verifying the correctness of your app.

We've addressed some practical algorithms of application testing in brief form. For more detailed information, you can contact us to have a personal consulting.

7. HOW FRESHCODE CAN HELP YOU TO TEST A FINTECH APP OR TO DEVELOP IT FROM SCRATCH

The present looks promising for FinTech and the future, no doubt, is going to be grand.

Today is the right time for enhancing your product with FinTech approaches or growing existing ones. And here is the QA team coming to help. Mighty. Attentive. Uncompromising (regarding bugs).

Such technologies as a one-time password system, short log-in sessions, identity verification, and adaptive authentication are commonly used in FinTech apps and require specific domain expertise. We at Freshcode, among other FinTech outsourcing companies in Ukraine, offer a set of portfolio cases with real-life reports and overviews of our partnership with FinTech related businesses.

Freshcode industry experts will help your company to identify and mitigate business risk in technology-led transformations, using complex FinTech development and test solutions, global delivery, and deep domain knowledge.

Contact us to discuss improvements and wins we can achieve together.
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