The Cyber Security Authority (CSA) has warned the public against subscribing to mobile applications that have not been approved by the Bank of Ghana (BoG) and the Data Protection Agency.
It stated that it had received reports of cyberbullying by users of digital lending mobile applications (Apps) available on Google Play or shared as Android Package files (APK) via social media.
FourCredy, FiCashX, 4Cedi, Aliloan, Boseapa, CediBoom, Cocoaloan, Mach Loan, Easy Loan, and Onloan are some of the most commonly reported Apps in this scheme.
According to a press release issued in Accra yesterday, these Apps offered loans at varying interest rates and payment terms, and when subscribers defaulted on repayment, the owners of these digital lending Apps threatened to publish their identities as wanted persons or fraudsters on various social media platforms and to their contacts.
“In some cases, the app owners carry out their threats. Some victims also reported receiving threat messages despite the fact that they had not taken out such loans.
Individuals who use these services do so entirely at their own risk. The public is also advised to carefully review access permissions for mobile applications before installing them,” according to the release.
It stated that victims would typically have granted these Apps permissions to access their data and personal identifiable information (PII) such as name, phone number, Ghana card ID number, contacts, and photo during installation unknowingly or without proper scrutiny.
“According to a Bank of Ghana notice (BG/GOV/SEC/2022/10), the bank has not licenced any company to provide such digital lending services to the public.
Furthermore, these digital lending Apps have not met the Data Protection Commission’s (DPC) compliance obligations, and thus their access and use of user data and PII is in violation of the Data Protection Act, 2012 (Act 843),” it added.
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