Google Junked Thousands Of Personal Loan Apps From Play Store In 2022

Google removed 3,500 personal loan apps from the Play Store for violations of the Play policy requirements in India in 2022.

What Happened? According to a blog post by Google, the California-based search giant revised its Play Store developer program policy for financial services apps, including additional requirements for personal loan apps in India.

App developers had to complete a declaration form and confirm their licensing status with the RBI by submitting a copy of the license or confirming that they only facilitate money lending by duly licensed lenders as per the policy.

Additionally, app developers needed to ensure that the developer account name matches the name of the associated registered business name provided through their declaration.

In 2022, Google introduced additional requirements for developers offering personal loans in India as facilitators on behalf of NBFCs and banks, requiring them to prominently disclose the names of all their partner NBFCs and banks in the app's description.

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They were also asked to provide a live URL to the respective websites of partner NBFCs and banks where they are listed as an official agent, as part of the ‘Personal Loan App Declaration’.

Furthermore, Google globally updated its Personal Loans policy to state that apps aiming to provide or facilitate personal loans may not access user contacts or photos.

The update prohibits apps that provide personal loans or primarily facilitate access to personal loans, such as lead generators or facilitators, from accessing sensitive data like photos and contacts.

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