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    Friday, August 4, 2023

    FCCPC orders Google to Remove Swiftcash, Easynaira, 16 Other Loan Apps

    Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) has issued an order asking Google to immediately delete Swiftcash, Easynaira, and 16 other loan apps from the Play store.

    The FCCPC has ordered Google to remove the applications of certain Digital Money Lending (DML) companies from Google Playstore, as the said apps are not duly registered to engage in digital moneylending.

    In a statement released on Wednesday, Babatunde Irukera, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the FCCPC brought to attention that certain apps had been delisted by the FCCPC, but remained on the Google Playstore. The Commission then found additional apps that had not received the necessary approvals, but were on Playstore as well.

    The statement read, “On July 20, 2023, the Federal Competition & Consumer Protection Commission (Commission) delisted certain otherwise approved and registered Digital Money Lending companies and, or their applications (apps). By that action, the affected DMLs ceased to operate legally.

    “In addition, the Commission entered an order to Google LLC (Google) to remove same from the Playstore, and prohibited payment gateways or services from providing or continuing services to the affected businesses.

    “The Commission as part of its continuing investigation and audit, has identified additional apps operating on the Google Playstore without regulatory approval or in violation of the Limited Interim Regulatory/Registration Framework and Guidelines for Digital Lending, 2022 (Guidelines).”

    The FCCPC then ordered Google to remove the following apps; Getloan, Joy Cash-Loan Up to 1,000,000, Camelloan, Cashlawn Nairaloan, Eaglecash, Moneytreefinance Made Easy, Luckyloan Personal Loan, Cashme, Easynaira, Swiftcash, Crediting, Swiftkash, Hen Credit loan, Nutloan, Cash door, Cashpal, Nairaeasy gist loan.

    Irukera then said, “The Commission will continue engaging Google to clarify how and why apps that have not received relevant regulatory approvals are available on Google’s platform (Play store). Under the Guidelines, only DMLs that have been subjected to regulatory scrutiny and compliance evidenced by written approval from the Commission are allowed on Playstore.”

    The Commission then advised the defaulting businesses to ensure that their DMLs are duly registered and provide evidence of compliance, as “infraction or infringements may lead to permanent delisting and prohibition, as well as law enforcement action, including prosecution”.

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