The U.S. patent office has granted Facebook an updated patent on technology that would allow lenders an opportunity to evaluate applicants based on the different social network connections they have.
Lenders will have the ability to track people based on how closely they are connected with social sites. The main purpose behind this technology is to minimize the amount of spam on social sites or prevent people from showing up in search results based on if you actually know the person doing the search, this is according to the “summary of invention” section of the patent. Here is what the summary discloses about the technology’s use for lenders:
“In a fourth embodiment of the invention, the service provider is a lender. When an individual applies for a loan, the lender examines the credit ratings of members of the individual’s social network who are connected to the individual through authorized nodes. If the average credit rating of these members is at least a minimum credit score, the lender continues to process the loan application. Otherwise, the loan application is rejected.”
Since the technology will be capable of getting credit information that does not mean that lenders will use the information in credit decisions. In the U.S., two federal laws protect consumers. The Fair Credit Reporting Act and the Equal Credit Opportunity Act.
Gerri Detweiler from credit.com said that the FCRA doesn’t stop companies from searching selling data from a person’s social activities for credit purposes. However, if the firm is deemed a credit reporting agency, they have strict standards for disclosure, accuracy and investigation of consumer disputes.
If you are experiencing hard financial times and need to get your debt under control, call Castle Law Office at 816-842-6200 to speak with an attorney. Or you can email us and schedule your free consultation.