“Should I borrow money from Okash?” The answer to this question always feels like a resounding YES especially when you get cash strapped.
It felt like a heavy burden lifted up from my shoulder when I saw the ad for Okash lending app. Of course, I was excited because I needed money urgently for the project I was working on at that time. I registered and took the loan of ₦20,000 for 2 weeks.
I had heard stories of individuals who had been publicly shamed and embarrassed by these loan apps. And I definitely didn’t want to fall a victim of the shaming calls. It baffled me how an organization could be this insensitive to privacy.
They Do Not Care About Your Privacy
Financial information is expected to be confidential. Many financial service providers offer a confidentiality agreement to protect customers against information leaks to third parties. However, many loan apps expose the financial positions of customers. And they don’t stop there, they go ahead to shame the customer, making everyone in the customers contact list believe that the person in question is a criminal.
Let me tell you a story. I borrowed some money and I was unable to get the complete funds as at the time the loan was expiring. However I went ahead to deposit what I had in my account and was willing to take the default period. Fast forward to my default day which was two days later, I kept getting calls informing me that my loan was due. It also said that my picture would be shared across social media if I did not repay immediately. Of course, I had to borrow from my mum and pay the loan.
They Will Shame and Blackmail You
Some would say that the method yields results as borrowers end up paying back the loans due to fear. But there are more ethical ways of retrieving loans professionally and getting even better results of returning customers.
The report of Okash using social media to shame individuals started to surface almost as soon as the app went live in Nairobi. A University of Nairobi student tweeted that the texts cost him his relationship. And another user said his boss almost fired him for embarrassing the company.
Run away from lenders that will breach your privacy and spy on your contact or messages. Because the damage this would do to your mental health and social capital could be worse than the damage of an inability to repay a loan. Some lenders have taken the approach similar to OKash’s. And even when an app doesn’t directly contact anybody, it might still use data as collateral: In Nigeria, for instance, the popular lending product Migo will scan a person’s contacts to see if they include known debtors.
The Government Too Does Not Like Them
The National Information and Technology Development Agency (NITDA), slammed Soko Lending Company with a fine of ₦10 million for privacy invasion. This was after a lot of complaints against the company for unauthorized disclosures, inability to protect customers’ personal data and libel. The fine was due to Soko’s “privacy-invading messages” to defaulting customer’s contacts. This line of action violates Article 2.2 of the Nigeria Data Protection Regulation which prohibits the illegal sharing of data with third parties without a legal basis.
Some Of These Apps Are Outright Scams
Before you borrow money from Okash and co, know that some of these apps are actually scams (Ncash in particular). I received a text some nights ago about a person who they claimed had defaulted his loan and is wanted by the police. When I asked him about it, he was surprised that such a message would go out because he paid back the loan the afternoon of that day.
The icing on the crap cake was the final call to action on the message saying I should send all my information so that I would repay the loan on behalf of the defaulter. If I was close to the fellow in question, I could have repaid a loan he had already paid.
Imagine how many people have fallen for this. I read a story of a man in an article that had paid back a loan to Halocredit but was still debited in his account the following day while the app still kept on sending him a default messages.
Other People Don’t like to borrow money from Okash
I asked some people and here is what they had to say
“L credit are live criminals they debited me twice ₦20,000 and never refund my money thieves they are.”
“L credit should be in your list of bad loan apps. They ask for your card details, that they want to deduct processing fee, with the promise of lending you 100k. They steal all the little change you have left in your account, then they redirect you to other apps. And they vanish your money into thin air.”
Poor Intrusive Customer Service
The last reason I would advice you to avoid these apps is their suspiciously intrusive and poor customer service. I got a call from Palm credit and the conversation went as thus;
Lady: Hello ma, I am calling you from Palm credit VIP section. I wanted to know why you haven’t applied for a loan yet after we increased your credit score.
Me: “oh, its because I don’t need a loan yet but if I do, I will definitely apply”
Lady: “Why don’t you need a loan ma, you have to need a loan”
Me (now confused): “ah I said I don’t need a loan now”
Lady: “Ma, you know you cant really predict what will happen in future, its better you take this loan.”
Me (now pissed): “Excuse me, I am very busy, have a nice day” Ends call.
For me, this is a sign of what would happen if I default when I borrow money from Okash and Co. However, there are still very good loan apps out there. Thorough research should be done on a loan app before you proceed to apply for a loan to avoid regrets in the later future.
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I am the lady with the numbers at OG capital. Graduate of accounting from Bingham university and a Business Valuation officer from CFI in view. Fun loving and kind. Living the life of christ