The Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) has blamed Google for its inability to track down the owners of some failing online money lending banks for violating consumer rights.
This indictment comes 2 weeks after the commission ordered Google and Apple to force the removal of these money-lending apps from their stores where evidence of inappropriate behavior or use of the app in violation of consumer rights has been established.
This was announced by the FCCPC Executive Vice President/Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Babtunde Irukera, during a collaborative interview with journalists on Thursday in Lagos.
Irukera said he sees the development as a potential threat to the key national interest, adding that once Google uses its Play Store as a platform for this type of app to work, there is a problem.
FCCPC executive vice president insists on holding Google accountable
Irukera said:No company, no matter how good it brings, should have the prerogative or the ability to be so anonymous.
“And that’s the problem we face. So we have to hold accountable the big guys who make a ton of money with our citizens.
“If we can hold them accountable and they become accountable for this type of behavior, then we can cascade down and we can tell Instagram that if someone is going to sell things on your platform, there must be certain information that must be available.
“You can’t provide these platforms and make money and look away while people coming to this platform exploit people and people are blocked.
“There has to be flat ground for everyone. In the absence of this, even your business itself is exploitation. If you are not the exploiter, you at least cede the platform to the exploiters to exploit people.
The FCCPC will work with law enforcement in the United States on this
- Irukera noted that it’s easier to hold Google accountable for the people behind online money lenders.
- He said the commission may need to work with law enforcement in the United States, to provide them with the information needed to get those behind the digital lenders.
- The FCCPC boss said: “We have our counterparts there and we will use our counterparts to tell Google that you are not welcome in this country if we cannot find you; that a regulator cannot bind you when your platform is used to exploit people.
- “No! You are not welcome. You are absolutely not welcome if your platform can be used to exploit people and the regulator cannot prevent this exploitation.
- “Therefore, you are absolutely not welcome. And I have absolutely no excuse for saying that about Google.
Unable to contact Google
Irukera expressed frustration with the commission’s inability to contact Google while trying to pull apps from the Google Store.
He said, “I find it extremely reprehensible and disgraceful from a company the size and scale of Google that you are barely where you can be found.
“It’s the height of reckless irresponsibility. It’s a company with a brand and a name like Google and so I intend to hold Google accountable.”
In case you missed it
- Recall that on March 11, the federal government, in a raid through its Joint Committee to Investigate Rights Violations and Unfair Practices, shut down some illegal online money lending banks to prevent not have registered with the Commercial Affairs Commission (CAC) and engaged in activities against the rights of Nigerians. consumers.
- These online banks have charged interest rates that violate the ethics of how loans are made and have been involved in whistleblowing and shaming, which is a violation of people’s privacy regarding how these lenders collect loans, among other violations.
- Lending companies offer short-term loans to help subscribers meet urgent needs, but resort to unprofessional measures of harassment, cyberbullying and data privacy breaches of their customers who may have defaulted on loan repayment. ready.
- Some of the relevant online money lending banks include; GoCash, Okash, EasyCredit, Kashkash, Speedy Choice and Easy Moni.