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Short term lending startup plans to use Facebook, Twitter to vet borrowers

Nov 30, 2012 Sean Albert

A new short term lender is challenging the way the sector does business and the metrics it uses to assess creditworthiness. Startup short term loan provider LendUp.com has announced that its company algorithms will utilize information found on the Facebook and Twitter profiles of borrowers to better understand their trustworthiness and the probability of them paying back the loan, Time magazine reports. LendUp will use the websites to verify certain information such as address and the borrower's current city of residence. Additionally, it will check to see if there are frequent changes to contact information, which could be a red flag, the news source explains. However, the startup doesn't plan to stop there - it will evaluate the strength of relationships and friends. "What we're looking at is the strength of your ability and your willingness to have longer-term cohesive social interactions," CEO Sasha Orloff told Time. Similar to employers looking at applicants' Facebook profiles, LendUp will be unable to base any decisions on pictures or any group connections, as this could open up allegations of bias against particular races, genders, religions and/or ethnic groups.