I'm not sure where to exactly post this. There is a website called mint.com which let's you enter your username and password for a bank, stock broker, etc and the aggregates all your information from all different accounts onto one screen (balances, transactions, etc).

How does mint.com do this? I highly doubt all the 6,500 financial institutions they support have API's to access. Put another way, if I wanted to aggregate all my private emails on DaniWeb and I had the my username and passsword, how can I do say programatically?
I assume it's something do with AJAX .

Thanks,
Harshal

> I highly doubt all the 6,500 financial institutions they support have API's to access.

Why so? Considering it's money business, I wouldn't be too surprised if mint.com has a way of talking with all of them and that too legally, of course under a sound contract. Anyways, how do you propose to access the account statistics of a bank without the bank knowing about it?

I agree with ~s.o.s.~ since most reputable Merchant Gateways (online CC processing) have published APIs for people to build software to interface with their services.

On the other hand...I hope mint.com has an amazing seal of approval for trust, else I wouldn't want to give all of my account info to a website ...

On a related note, it is possible to build a user-agent (robot, spider) to go to websites and extract data from their web forms (if the site isn't guarded from such actions) via RegEx or similar means. I've done it with major book vendors getting titles and prices from ISBN numbers. So this is a possible approach in some circumstances.

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