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Data standards for Pensions Dashboards published

The Pensions Dashboards Programme (PDP) has today published its key data standards in a move which should help providers begin to get ready for the new dashboards which will give pensions savers detailed information about their retirement savings in one place.

The ‘find and view’ data standards will provide the technology foundation to allow individuals to view their pensions via their chosen dashboard, says the PDP.

The PDP has been set up by the Money and Pensions Service (MAPS) to design and implement the framework for the dashboards which are due to arrive in 2023.

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The standards provide a “common language” to describe the pensions information that will be displayed on the dashboards for individual’s different pensions. Pension providers will be required to ensure that the data they hold is consistent with the data standards.

 The basic information that pension providers will supply to the initial dashboards will include:

  • Find data: to access dashboards, users will need to share their personal data via an identity service, so they can be matched to the pensions they hold. This will include a person’s first name and surname, date of birth, address and national insurance number.
  • View data: once the person’s identity has been verified, the pension provider will display information about any pensions found to belong to the user via their chosen dashboard.  This will include details such as a person’s pension arrangement and the name of the pension provider.
  • Income data: this will provide the individual with an estimated retirement income and the date payable for each pension as well as the current value of a person’s pension pot if they have defined contribution pensions.

UK-based state and private pensions, including in the public sector, will be included in the first iteration of pensions dashboards.

Pensions minister Guy Opperman MP said: “Bringing information to savers at the touch of a screen will revolutionise how we engage with our pensions and plan for retirement. Getting data standards right is vital, to realise the full potential of pension dashboards. The publication of key data standards is therefore an important and welcome step.”

The Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association said the publication of the standards marked “good progress” but attention should also focus on consumer protection.

Nigel Peaple, director of policy & research, PLSA, said: “PLSA members have consistently told us that they require legal certainty and a set of clear, unambiguous data standards to plan and resource preparations for dashboards. With the recent discussions on the Pension Schemes Bill and today’s publications by the Pensions Dashboards Programme (PDP), we can see good progress towards meeting this essential industry requirement. That said, more work will be needed on detailing and specifying these standards over the next year.”

“Whilst pension schemes can now start to prepare their data in earnest, it is essential that the PDP turns its focus to the development of a robust consumer protection framework over the course of 2021. Appropriate protections should be in place long before the first dashboard goes live to ensure that the data dashboards present and the functionality they offer do not result in consumer detriment, mis-selling or pension scams.”

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