Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Facebook Friends Could Ruin Your Credit!

This article at PC World, Skeptical Shopper: Can Your Online Life Ruin Your Credit, brings up something I hadn’t thought of before. Apparently, credit issuers are starting to judge a person based on their online community.

This worries me a little since I’m not picky on who I “friend” on Facebook. I also don’t run a credit check on my friends…I’m sure most of them would come back with major issues. My only saving grace is that I do not actually participate in online social networks much at all. I get emailed when someone sends me a direct message…that’s about as techy as I get.

I also wonder how intelligent this kind of credit check makes the banks. Obviously, not all of my friends and family are going to be in the same financial boat as myself. Wouldn’t it be weird to find that someone only surrounds themselves with people exactly like themselves?

Also, does having my own financial blog count in my favor? If you lose so many points for a “deadbeat” friend, can you earn them back by posting fiscally responsible blogs?

Okay, now I’m just getting silly, but I think that creditors who use this method are pretty silly too.

How would you fare if you were judged based on your online social network? My “Excellent” rating would fall a level or two…


  1. I would be a "No Hit", as I don't have a Facebook page. It's hard enough for me to keep up with e-mail, I don't want something else I need to check.

    It does not surprise me that companies are trying different things to enhance their credit models. If they can find something that's predictive and cheap, that means more profit for them. But they won't find anything on me. :-)

  2. Remember you are the average of your 5 closest friends.

    I would think this would be too time intensive. How would they go about comparing all your friends from social media when you have 1,000 facebook friends not even talking about the other networks?

  3. I'm a skeptical that banks or credit bureaus are actually using Facebook to gather data or make decisions about your credit much if at all. I don't know if they'd be able to get anything particularly meaningful or useful out of Facebook. Its all unverified and much of its private. I don't see anything there about me that they can't get off the credit bureaus. I don't see anything about my friends that would be particularly meaningful to anyone to base any conclusions on.

  4. Wow, but I guess if a company can be influenced to hire or fire you based on a social media account... then credit companies can be influenced by your SM accts, too! Still...credit accounts. Don't think it should be allowed. But, I will keep it in mind.

  5. I'm trying to downsize the amount of credit I have now and pay cash for most things so I'm not in a mode to care at this point. If they looked at my facebook friends, I'd probably be above average as many of my FB friends are related to me and have very good credit.

  6. Evolution of Wealth, yeah, I have no idea how that would work...I'm not even very involved, but I have more than 100 people "friended".