This article will focus on how to stop loan apps from accessing your contacts and sending messages to your contact list including family, friends and loved ones.
We have received many phone calls, messages, and questions both online and offline from loan app consumers who have suffered defamation and harassment from loan apps in Nigeria and are now seeking to know how best to stop loan apps from accessing, calling, messaging and texting their contacts in Android devices and iOS iPhones.
So how do you stop, block or prevent loan apps from accessing, texting or sending messages to your contacts? I will provide simple and effective six veritable methods to achieve this. But first let us understand how loan apps operate and how they harass their victims and customers.
Many Instant Loan Apps Emerging in Nigeria Promising Small Loan At Competitive Interest Rate
There are so many loan apps these days that offer to give you small loans at good interest rates. With the current hardship Nigerians are facing, it is perhaps no surprise that there are lots of people looking for loans, in a bid to survive the harsh economy.
This however had led to many fraudulent and unregistered loan apps in the market, which grant people loans at ridiculous interest rates and also resort to shady tactics in a bid to get defaulters to repay the loan.
Some of these tactics including sending defaming and threatening messages to the defaulters close friends and families, after obtaining the contacts from their phone.
Some of these loans will send their defaulters death threats, spreading false rumors about them to their contacts, including telling people that you have HIV and some other deadly diseases, all in a bid to get them to repay their outstanding loan.
If you want to know how to stop loan apps from sending messages to your contacts, or from even accessing your contacts in the first place, then you need to read this interesting write up.
The following are permanent ways to stop any loan app from accessing your phone number and sending messages to your contacts:
1. Turn off permissions
When you download and install a loan app, you will usually be asked to grant permission to the loan app to access your contacts. If you accept this, the loan app will have access to all your contacts and therefore can send messages to them, when you default on your loan.
If you want to stop the loan apps from having access to your contacts, you will have to turn off the permissions given to the loan app by following the steps below:
- Navigate to settings on your android or IOS device
- Navigate to apps manager
- Navigate to apps permission
- Select the loan app that you want to deny access to your contacts
- You can then revoke the access
Once you have done the above, the loan application will no longer have permission to access your contacts on your mobile phone.
2. Repay your loan
If you want to prevent loan apps from sending messages to your contact, then you will need to repay your loan before the due date.
When you take a loan, there is usually a set date in which you will need to pay back your loan. Failure to repay the loan will incur additional interest, as well as running the risk of getting defaming messages being sent to your contacts, friends and family.
Always make sure you pay back your loan at the agreed date, and if you know you will not be able to pay back, then don’t take the loan.
3. Patronize only reputable and registered loan apps
Another way to prevent loan apps from accessing your contacts and sending messages and threats to your family and loved ones, is to only use reliable, legitimate and registered loan apps. This is because these loan apps will not result to such shady tactics in order to get you to pay back your loan.
Before taking a loan, you should ensure that the loan app is registered with the central bank of Nigeria and approved by the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC). This will prevent any risk of defaming messages being sent to your phone contacts.
Some registered loan apps you can take loans from are branch loan app, carbon loan app, renmoney, fairmoney and many more.
However, this doenst mean that you should take loans without the intention of paying back, as failure to repay your loans on these apps, may lead to you being blacklisted and unable to access loans in the future.
4. Uninstall the app
If you want to stop loan apps from accessing your contacts or sending messages to your phone, you may need to unistall and delete the app.
If you have not given the loan app permission to your contacts, you can easily uninstall the app and they will not be able to access your contacts.
If you have already granted them permission, you will have to revoke and disable the permission from your phone settings, before you should delete or uninstall the app.
5. Avoid taking loans
This one is obvious, but it has to be said. If you don’t want these loans apps to send defaming messages to your contacts. Then you should not take loans from them.
When you take loans and fail to repay, these loan apps will send defaming and threatening messages to your contacts, in a bid to get you to repay your outstanding loan.
6. Go to Google Play Store
The first step To stop loan app harassment, you need to go to the Google Play store and download an app called App Lock. It’s a free app that lets you set up passcodes and block phone features. Then open up App Lock and create a new app lock. In that lock, search for a loan. Go through all of those options until you find a tab called Loan Blocking. If there is no such option for App Lock, then click on any of the loan apps (i.e., LendUp, Aimloan, Okash, etc). Once you are in Loan Blocking select Block or just Uninstall it.
How Does Loan Apps Get Access To Your Contacts?
Very simple. Loan apps get access to your contacts when you download a loan application into your phone, register your details and personal information with it and proceed to borrow money from the lending application.
When you download an app for the first time, the app owner may ask for certain permissions from your phone. These permissions could be access to your contacts, photos, messages, camera, and lot more. Many people grant these permissions in order to use the services the app is offering.
Before you get approval for your loan application, your contacts immediately get downloaded into the loan app’s external database, including your personal information such as your full names, contacts names and numbers, photos, BVN, phone details, profession, etc.
What Are The Ways To Block Loan Apps From Sending Messages To My Contacts?
The best way to stop loan apps from accessing your contacts is not to download the apps at all. If you already downloaded on your phone, and want to deny and disable permission to access your phone and contact list, do the following:
- Step 1: Go to Settings on your phone.
- Step 2: Open Apps under settings.
- Step 3: Click on Permissions.
- Step 4: Select Contacts under permissions.
- Step 5: Choose the loan app to disable and remove permissions.
Can Loan Apps Access My Contacts After Uninstalling?
The simple answer is no. Loan apps cannot access your contacts after uninstalling. Once you delete an app from your phone, the app owner no longer have access to your personal information or your phone database.
Once you uninstall or delete a loan app from your phone, you automatically deny them permission to access your contact list, and from accessing, calling or messaging your contacts and thereby prevent any further harassment from the loan sharks.
However if you deny any lending platform permission from accessing your contact, your loan will NOT be approved and you won’t get any funding from the loan app. So you have to decide on which one is more important to you.
How can I stop online loan sharks from accessing my phone information?
To stop online loan sharks and fake loan apps from accessing your information and sending messages to your contacts, follow these steps:
Don’t grant the app permission
First of all, you need to understand that not all apps deserve to get permission to access your information. Some of them should end up just installing them and never giving them access to your private information such as contacts, messages, etc.
Remove Permissions from Settings
If you have granted the app access to your information, that is fine. You can still remove the permissions by going to your phone settings and selecting the app and proceeding to remove the permission. After that, the app would stop having access to your information.
Uninstall the App
Another alternative is to remove the app completely from your phone. If you remove an app from your phone it would stop collecting your information if you already gave it permission.
How Can I Stop Online Loan Shark Harassment?
The easiest way to stop online loan shark harassment is by doing the following:
- Pay any outstanding loan you have previously borrowed from any digital lender. Once you have paid, ensure you don’t collect any more loan from the loan sharks again and uninstall the affected app.
- Report the online loan app harassment you suffered victim of, to Google Playstore, (Google Play Protect) or you report such app to an online media platform or to the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) so the harassment could be publicized and given necessary awareness and perhaps the government get to see it and take prohibitive actions.
If you are a victim of online loan harassment, cyberbullying, defamation and threats, character assassination, and other illegal activities of lending apps in Nigeria, you can report such activities to the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and stating your encounter with the platform.
Can loan apps come to my house?
No. A loan app cannot come to your house. However if you already downloaded their app and collected their loan, they can access your contact list, databases, BVN, profile details and can report you to the credit bureau and blacklist your name against your BVN if you default on your loan.
Please safely uninstall the app and do not patronize their loan anymore if you wish to prevent them from accessing your phone contacts again.
Google Stops Loan Apps Hosted On Its Play Store From Accessing Customers’ Phone Contacts, Photos and Videos
Google has just announced plan henceforth stopping loan apps hosted on its Play Store from accessing sensitive user data such as contacts, photos, videos, and similar profile details. The update, which was unveiled to the Personal Loans Policy yesterday, will take effect from May 31st.
This means that loan apps will no longer be able to access users contacts, gallery, photos, pictures, videos and other sensitive user data. This also means that you are now free to borrow money from any loan app without the fear of your data being compromised or invaded and shared with the public or users’ contacts.
“Apps that provide personal loans, or have the primary purpose of facilitating access to personal loans (i.e., lead generators or facilitators), are prohibited from accessing sensitive data, such as photos and contacts,” the company said in its update.
This move is in response to the growing concerns about predatory lending practices adopted by loan apps globally. In Africa—especially Nigeria and Kenya—these (mostly unregulated) lenders, adopt debt-shaming and unethical data-sharing practices to torture their customers into repayment.
The proliferation of fake loans apps in these countries gave way to the strict regulatory oversight that followed. Now, Kenya’s central bank and Nigeria’s Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) are gradually overhauling the industry, one licence at a time. Google is also privy to these changes, allowing only the licenced apps to remain on its platform.
This new update to Google Policy for loan apps hosted on its Play Store implies that no lending applications will be able to access your phone and contact details anymore bringing an abrupt end to the dismal regime of defamation and public shaming of loan defaulters in Nigeria, Kenya, India and many other countries of the world where loan applications have gained immense relevance.
The loan apps you borrow from uses your contact list as collateral and guarantee in case you default on your repayment. However i you follow the above procedures, you should be able to stop loan apps from sending messages to your contacts. If you require further help, you can leave us a comment below in the comment section or visit our contact us page and we will get back to you as soon as we possibly can.
And if you have already borrowed money from the loan app, you can stop them from further accessing your phone contacts and other details until you have granted permission. How do you get this done?