If you knew that social media could affect your credit score, you might not post that next super-filtered selfie or 3-hour vent on Facebook. Social media and credit scores? Yes, there’s a connection that you need to see to believe. Discover how credit bureaus could be judging your social media behavior and how it could affect your credit worthiness below.
According to Forbes, FICO, one of the nation’s largest credit rating companies, recently expanded the ways it tests a consumer’s creditworthiness, including looking at information posted on social media sites such as Facebook.
The company, creator of the FICO credit scoring system, is also looking at sifting through smartphone records, according to various media reports. “If you look at how many times a person says ‘wasted’ in their (Facebook) profile, it has some value in predicting whether they’re going to repay their debt,” FICO chief executive Will Lansing told the Financial Times newspaper.
Creepy? Indeed. But hardly surprising when you take a step back and consider all the ways big data searches have been creeping into our daily lives and seemingly invading our privacy. Tapping Facebook to determine the credit quality of young borrowers — or anyone for that matter — is just another step in this nothing-is-private-anymore process.
Now, with so much more personal data out there, companies have come up with the software to capture it. Generally, the technology allows a credit rating company to search for certain key words, phrases and slang terms for drinking and partying — like getting smashed, trashed and wasted.
FICO has noted that the new credit assessment tests are not fully intended to negatively impact a person’s credit score. A clean image on Facebook, for example, might actually help a person get credit.
Do you think social media affects the way you work, do business and play? If you could share just one social media tip with your younger self, what would it be? Sound off in the comments below!