socialmediaI read an interesting article today out of the United States on how borrowers are needing to jump through social media hurdles from lenders.  It reads; “Regulators Have Concerns About Lenders’ Use of Facebook, Other Sites”.
More and more lending  companies are “mining” sites like Facebook and Twitter for more detailed information on applicants.  For example, searching for whether they quit a job or were actually let go; searching for if they use the same job information on LinkedIn as they do in their application.  There are two examples of many.
The article even says that the possibility of a small business that draws a negative review on a site like Ebay could face the possibility of not getting approved or of being charged a higher interest rate based on that online review.
This practice is currently in place for smaller companies that give out loans, but it’s catching the eye of some of the bigger lenders.
“Regulators are watching the trend and trying to determine whether to police financial institutions’ use of online data in credit scoring, officials say. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau says it is aware that some businesses are exploring how to use social media to inform credit decisions.”
In case you’re thinking this is a TERRIBLE thing, “Some consumers say they don’t mind if companies check their social-media presence because using sources beyond traditional FICO scores may allow them to get credit when other lenders turn them down.”