Google staff visited CUNA’s Washington, D.C. office earlier this week to discuss its plans to partner with credit unions and banks to offer checking accounts through Google Pay.
During the meeting, Google provided details on the product it is developing, along with a timeline of when a Google co-branded checking account would be available to the public.
Google is partnering through the first stages of development with Stanford FCU, Palo Alto, Calif. and Citibank, but will likely add more partners as development progresses.
The product will be a checking account accessed through Google Pay, similar to the way credit cards are accessed through the Google Pay app. The major difference is that checking accounts will be designed to work specifically with Google Pay, meaning they must be opened by Google through Google Pay. They will be accessible only through Google Pay as well as a Google branded (or possibly co-branded, with the financial institution) debit card.
CUNA has major concerns about privacy. Google stated that it would not sell consumers’ financial information- Gramm Leach Bliley Act (GLBA) privacy restrictions would likely prohibit this anyway. (Nonetheless, consumers using a Google account are making a decision to share information with Google for features available through the Google checking account)
CUNA expects Google will add more credit unions and banks as it continues to develop the checking account and will continue to work with Google to ensure that the Google checking account and account opening process is compatible with credit unions and credit union membership requirements.
According to Google, its goal is to make the product available to consumers in mid-2020.
Additional details on the meeting are available on CUNA’s Removing Barriers Blog.