Google cracks down on personal loan apps in India following abuse and outcry – TechCrunch

Google said on Thursday that it had pulled some personal loan apps from the Play Store in India and is implementing strong measures to prevent the misuse of reports that said several companies were targeting vulnerable borrowers in the country And then going to extreme lengths to recover her money.

The Android-making company said that users and government agencies in India recently marked several personal loan apps and the company reviewed hundreds of them. The review identified apps that violated the Play Store’s security policies and were immediately removed from the store.

Google, whose Android operating system 98% rights of smartphones in India, It has asked the developers of the remaining identified apps to demonstrate that their applications are in compliance with applicable local laws and regulations.

“Apps that fail to do so will be removed without further notice. In addition, we will continue to assist law enforcement agencies in investigating this issue, ”the company said.

Users have identified a number of lending apps in India in recent months, including 10MinuteLoan and Ex-Wealth, for short term loans to people without much verification to determine their eligibility. Up to 200) provided Charge processing fee.

To avoid such misuse, Google said that the Play Store would allow only those individual apps for which customers would have to make their payments in 60 days or more.

When borrowers struggled to repay their debts in the short term, collection agents on behalf of some lending apps threatened to embarrass them in front of their friends, colleagues and family, Among other sick tactics. In November, local newspaper Indian Express Reported A 23-year-old man committed suicide by getting fed up with a money lending app.

“To protect user privacy, developers should only request permissions that are required to implement current features or services. They should not use permissions that use user or device data for undeclared, non-implemented, or unapproved features or purposes, “Suzanne Frey, Vice President, Product, Android Security and Privacy, In a blog post.

“Developers only have to use the data for the purposes that the user has agreed to, and if they later want to use the data for other purposes, they have to seek the user’s permission for additional uses,” he said. said.

A few months after Thursday’s move, Google stepped up its efforts Crack on fantasy sports apps in India.

More to follow…