Google restricts publication of PH online loan apps


Online lending companies that want to publish their apps on Google’s Google Play Store are now required to submit documents issued by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

This was the result of the SEC’s own recommendation to Google to have a stricter approval process for online loan applications in the Philippines.

The Philippines is just the third country where Google will implement the additional requirements for personal loan app developers to curb the proliferation of illegal and abusive online lending activities, the other two being India and India. Indonesia.

The SEC said the policy will go into effect on May 11, 2022, where online lending apps will now have to submit a personal loan application statement and other documents before their apps can be published on the Google Play Store.

“In the declaration form, developers must declare that they are registered with the SEC Philippines and duly authorized by it to operate an online lending platform (OLP) or to carry out crowdfunding activities based on lending, such as peer-to-peer lending, or to act as a crowdfunding intermediary,” the SEC said.

“Furthermore, developers must confirm that they are engaged in a lawful business activity and undertaking the same in accordance with applicable laws,” he added.

Personal loan apps operating in the Philippines without proper licensing and disclosure will then be removed from the Play Store, the SEC said.

In the event that the license, registration or statement submitted is no longer valid under applicable laws, developers are required to promptly remove the application from Google Play Store.

In November 2021, the SEC placed a moratorium on new PLOs while it drafts PLO registration and licensing guidelines. Under SEC Memorandum Circular No. 10, Series of 2021, only those registered as of November 2, 2021 may operate and be used for online lending or financing, subject to strict supervision.

“In addition to flagging and requesting the removal of unlicensed lending apps from the Google Play Store, the Commission has directed the US tech giant to verify the legitimacy of lending and finance companies seeking to develop and publish their apps. “, said

SEC Chairman Emilio Aquino added that the Commission has been in correspondence with Google since May 2019 to address the proliferation of unregistered personal loan apps.

Aquino said the SEC regularly monitors lending and finance companies for compliance with applicable laws, rules and regulations, in an effort to protect borrowers from abusive, unethical and illegal lenders.

“To date, the Commission has revoked the certificates of registration of more than 2,000 finance and finance companies, which have failed to obtain their required CAs, and canceled the CAs of 37 finance and finance companies. loan due to various violations of applicable rules and regulations,” he said.

“In addition, the Commission ordered 72 PLOs to cease operations for lack of authority to operate as a loan or finance company,” Aquino said.


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David A. Albanese