FCCPC) has approved an additional 211 digital money lenders, known as loan apps, marking an increase from 161 fully approved companies in September.

FCCPC To Probe Loan Apps, As Lenders Resume Customer Harassment

1 year ago
1 min read

Loan apps in Nigeria risk another clampdown on their operations by the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC), as they devise new ways to engage customers. 

Digital lending companies have been in the news lately over their harassment of debtors, a situation the FCCPC has decided to investigate.

FCCPC Chief Executive Officer, Babatunde Irukera, said they have been reading stories of the loan apps harassing their customers in a bid to force repayment of loans.

Irukera said after investigation, should the loan apps continue to send defamatory messages to their customers or harass them, Google will be directed to delist the affected lending apps. 

Recall that FCCPC had directed to remove some loan apps, one of which is Sokoloan, due to customer harassment, and also demanded that loan apps operating in Nigeria should register their business with the commission. 

The loan apps were accused of obtaining the contacts of their customers and sending defamatory messages to the contacts of the customers owing them. 

Google has now restricted loan apps from accessing the contacts of lending app users, following a discussion between the internet giant and the Nigerian authority. 

Speaking about the continuous harassment of their customers, Irukera said: “The consequence of this, they know it, is that if any of these defamatory messages or harassments goes out again, they will be delisted, and we will ask Google to take them down permanently.” 

“But we can’t take that kind of step without knowing for sure because what we’ve found is that the loan apps that are still doing those things are not on Google,” he further stated in a Punch report. 

He said the loan apps currently accused of harassing their customers are not registered with FCCPC. Irukera revealed that the lending apps are using WhatsApp and below-the-radar channels to engage consumers. 

“Most of the complaints we’ve received about these things show that the companies are not on our list/ Google. They are the ones who are using WhatsApp, APK, and other softer, below-the-radar channels to engage consumers,” Irukera said.

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