Borrowers Hit Social-Media Hurdles

Regulators Have Concerns About Lenders’ Use of Facebook, Other Sites

By Stephanie Armour Jan. 8, 2014 6:51 p.m. ET

WASHINGTON—More lending companies are mining Facebook, FB -2.23% Twitter TWTR -5.62% and other social-media data to help determine a borrower’s creditworthiness or identity, a trend that is raising concerns among consumer groups and regulators.

More lending companies are mining Facebook, Twitter and other social-media data to help determine a borrower’s creditworthiness or identity, a trend that is raising concerns among consumer groups and regulators. Stephanie Armour reports. Photo: Getty.

Lending companies—some of which are backed with venture funding from Google Ventures, GOOG -1.10% the venture-capital arm of Google Inc., and Accel Partners, an early Facebook Inc. investor—are looking at potential problems such as whether applicants put the same job information on their loan application as they posted on LinkedIn, or if they shared on Facebook that they had been let go by an employer. A small business that draws negative reviews on eBay EBAY -0.73% eBay Inc. U.S.: Nasdaq $51.99 -0.38-0.73% Jan 9, 2014 2:49 pm Volume (Delayed 15m) : 4.51M P/E Ratio 24.56 Market Cap $67.80 Billion Dividend Yield N/A Rev. per Employee $491,936 53.0052.5052.0051.5010a11a12p1p2p3p 12/23/13 Holidays Come Early for Accel … 12/20/13 Amazon vs. Google: It’s A War … 12/20/13 ModCloth CFO: Four Metrics Tha… More quote details and news » also could undermine its chances of getting more credit, lending companies say.

Borrowers Hit Social-Media Hurdles

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