I ran across this service called filethis.com. What they do is log into your bank accounts and download your statements for you, then drop them off in your filethis account or dropbox. They have affiliates with many financial institutions.
My worry, of course, is supplying them bank login information. But I like the idea of having my statements delivered to me automatically.
Is there a way to get devonthink to do this? Maybe an applescript?
Cool idea, but not sure I’m ready to give up access to my accounts.
I would be extremely hesitant to share my log in information to my bank.
Check their paragraph 12 - no responsibility for the information you share.
This is one of my main arguments for why I use Devonthink. I want to be in control of my own information. I do not even want to store it unencrypted in a cloud.
I love the fact that when I sync my iOS a devices with the database on my computer it is just inside my own local WiFi network.
I have no clue who is the owner of the company I trust with my information tomorrow or how it is used. Trust is great but control is better and for sure more critical.
When I first started to use Devonthink a month ago I felt a bit limited by the WiFi sync but today I just love it. I don’t have to feel worried that all my files are just a password away on a server rented by a company that I don’t control.
I would never even think of sharing my bank passwords with anyone else (except my wife
I already have online access to all my banking and investment accounts, and can already download statements and tax reports from them, which I manage in DEVONthink. That takes very little effort on my part, and I prefer controlling such information myself rather than farming it out to another party, whom I would have to trust to maintain security of the information.
In my case, I’m not a customer for third party management of my financial records.
I try not to be too paranoid, but in the back of my mind I’ve contemplated possibilities such as my banks and investment funds experiencing a massive failure of their computer systems and online services. That’s why I feel a bit more comfortable capturing statements and tax report forms to my computer, where I also keep backups on external drives under my control, onsite and offsite. How much good would that do me if there’s some sort of Internet Armageddon? Who knows, but at least I’ve got access to those records.
Of course. My banks and investment firms generate statements monthly, and annual tax report forms as PDFs. When one becomes available I open it online, then in the browser choose File > Save as and download it to the Inbox location in the Finder, which saves it to my Global Inbox in DEVONthink Pro Office. From there, I file the document(s) to appropriate locations in my financial database.
I don’t know about you, but I’ve got 9 banking and investment accounts, plus two credit card accounts. I visit those online quite frequently to keep an eye on what’s happening. I don’t wait for statements to do reviews of what happened. As a result, when a monthly statement becomes available, or annually when tax report forms appear, it takes only moments to capture to DEVONthink. No third party or scripting needed.
I maintain statements for possible historical value, and can search across them by vendor in DEVONthink, whereas that’s not possible online. But most of the benefits of keeping an eye on what’s happening result from inspections before statements are issued. That’s important for credit card charges (once in a while, e.g., I catch a charge from a vendor whose account had previously been cancelled). It’s especially important for investment accounts, of course, where the world may have already moved on before a statement appears.
The OP is not asking if DEVONthink can import statement documents (“of course” it can). The OP asked if DEVONthink can be scripted to automate access to the back accounts to retrieve the statement documents. The answer to that question is no. It is not DEVONthink you script to do this, it is your browser.
You can do the manual thing that Bill described and import the documents, or you can use an existing service like the one you found (and import the documents), or you can write your own screen scrapper to access your accounts. The last route is a lot of work does not involve DEVONthink. See, for example, threads on this topic on Stack Overflow, or learn about Beautiful Soup, a Python library for buildling screen scrapers.
All but one of the online banking or investment firm sites I visit do not collect into a list view all of the statements or tax report forms, but require them to be accessed individually by account, document type and period. That would make it difficult if not impossible to download them other than individually - one at a time. That’s what I do. As I’m making frequent visits to those sites for other reasons, it only takes a few seconds to add new statements or reports as they appear.
The advantage of the site that aggregates statements and tax reports is that it might be possible to download multiple items at once,and probably very easy to collect multiple items at once to DEVONthink from the Dropbox folder.
As I don’t need to do that (I’ve already got past data), I don’t need FileThis. If I didn’t already have historical data collected and wanted to add it, my preference would be to spend a few hours collecting it myself, drudgery though that would be, than to give another party access to my accounts. Perhaps I’m eccentric.
Online banking is already insecure enough. I imagine there is something out there to automate this, but I wouldn’t recommend giving access away to anyone, and I don’t think it is terribly burdensome to download the data when I need it. I don’t fear a digital armageddon, because if my banks were somehow in that kind of a jam, I doubt my PDF would get my money back, and I suspect that under those conditions, the world economy would not be in a state to provide it. I just download the data to keep track of what I have where.
I’d also like to second the enthusiastic support for Devonthink’s wifi sync. Thank goodness someone out there has enough sense to provide a secure way to sync. The encrypted Dropbox sync is also greatly appreciated. You won’t find many other apps with this much security baked in. It’d be a shame to undermine it all by handing over your banking information to someone!