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The dark side of FinTech in financial services: a qualitative enquiry into FinTech developers’ perspective

Brinda Sampat (NMIMS Global Access School for Continuing Education, NMIMS University, Mumbai, India)
Emmanuel Mogaji (Department of Marketing, Events and Tourism, University of Greenwich, Greenwich, UK) (Department of Research Administration and International Relations, University of Economics Ho Chi Minh City, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam)
Nguyen Phong Nguyen (School of Accounting, University of Economics Ho Chi Minh City, Ho Chi Minh City, Viet Nam)

International Journal of Bank Marketing

ISSN: 0265-2323

Article publication date: 5 July 2023

Issue publication date: 22 January 2024




FinTech offers numerous prospects for significant enhancements and fundamental changes in financial services. However, along with the myriad of benefits, it also has the potential to induce risks to individuals, organisations and society. This study focuses on understanding FinTech developers’ perspective of the dark side of FinTech.


This study conducted semi-structured interviews with 23 Nigerian FinTech developers using an exploratory, inductive methodology The data were transcribed and then thematically analysed using NVivo.


Three themes – customer vulnerability, technical inability and regulatory irresponsibility – arose from the thematic analysis. The poor existing technological infrastructure, data management challenges, limited access to data and smartphone adoption pose challenges to a speedy integration of FinTech in the country, making customers vulnerable. The lack of privacy control leads to ethical issues. The lack of skilled developers and the brain drain of good developers present additional obstacles to the development of FinTech in Nigeria.

Research limitations/implications

FinTech operation in a developing country differs from that in developed countries with better technological infrastructure and institutional acceptance. This study recognises that basic banking operations through FinTech are still not well adopted, necessitating the need to be more open-minded about the global practicalities of FinTech.

Practical implications

FinTech managers, banks and policymakers can ethically collect consumer data that can help influence customer credit decisions, product development and recommendations using the mobile app and transaction history. There should be strict penalties on FinTech for selling customers’ data, sending unsolicited messages or gaining unnecessary access to the customer’s contact list. FinTech can offer to educate consumers about their financial management skills.


Whereas other studies have focused on the positive aspects of FinTech to understand client perceptions, this study offers new insights into the dark side of FinTech by analysing the viewpoints of FinTech developers. Furthermore, the study is based in Nigeria, an emerging economy adopting FinTech, adding a new dimension to the body of knowledge.



The authors would like to thank the participants who generously shared their time and experiences for the purposes of this project. The findings and recommendations are a collaborative interpretation of the collective wisdom of the managers, and would not be possible without their support and participation. The authors thank the Guest Editors and the two anonymous reviewers for their continuous efforts to help improve the quality of the manuscript. This study was supported by the University of Economics Ho Chi Minh City.


Sampat, B., Mogaji, E. and Nguyen, N.P. (2024), "The dark side of FinTech in financial services: a qualitative enquiry into FinTech developers’ perspective", International Journal of Bank Marketing, Vol. 42 No. 1, pp. 38-65.



Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2023, Emerald Publishing Limited

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