SEC Quells 33 Online Lending Applications on Google Play
Manila/ Digital/ Apps

SEC Removes 33 Online Lending Apps From Google Play Store for Violation

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SEC Online Lending Apps Google Play

A total of 33 unregistered online lending applications have been removed from Google Play Store following action from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

These apps were removed on Google Play Store with assistance from Google Philippines as of Jan. 30, the SEC reported in a press release dated Feb. 7. This is part of the commission's efforts targeting unauthorized online lending platforms (OLPs) for its campaign against illegal lending.

Online Lending

The online lending apps were not reported to the SEC and are thus in violation of SEC Memorandum Circular No. 19, Series of 2019 ((SEC MC 19) Disclosure Requirements on Advertisements of Financing Companies and Lending Companies and Reporting of OLPs).

Under SEC MC 19, financing companies and lending companies must fully disclose in their ads and OLPs their corporate name, SEC Registration Number, and Certificate of Authority to Operate a Financing/Lending Company (CA) Number. Moreover, they must also register all their OLPs as business names and submit an Affidavit of Compliance of each one to the Corporate Governance and Finance Department.

The SEC's Memorandum Circular No. 10, Series of 2021 (SEC MC 10) also imposed a moratorium on the registration of new OLPs, which also includes financing and lending companies that engage in OLPs. Thus, only companies that have registered their OLPs as of Nov. 2, 2021, are allowed to operate, albeit under strict monitoring.

"The removal of the [33] OLPs is also in line with the SEC’s previous discussions with Google. In May 2022, Google adopted a new policy which required developers with personal loan apps targeting users in the Philippines to submit a Personal Loan App Declaration and necessary documentation before they could publish apps on Google Play Store," the release read.

Thus far, the SEC has rescinded the Certificates of Registration of over 2,000 lending and financing companies that failed to secure their CA. It has also scrapped the CA of 39 lending and financing companies due to violations.

To view the SEC's list of recorded online lending platforms, go here.

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