It turns out that financial institutions are jumping on the social media bandwagon, but not in the embrace-all kind philosophy employed by many social media users. These financial institutions have started tapping into the information that individuals reveal online – why? In hopes of identifying good credit customers. The theory: the friends you keep and the information you disclose to them online is a much better indicator of you as a customer than a controlled application where you have to be on your best behavior.
What does this mean for social media users?
The behavior patterns gleaned from comments made on social media platforms allows financial services agencies – such as banks – to develop client profiles. They can learn what a potential clients wants, doesn’t like, and what their views are on spending. For example, if your Facebook post says, “Can’t pay my rent, but could not resist that Hermes bag…” – that would say something about your spending habits and sense of responsibility.
“Your Only as Good As the Company You Keep”
In addition to what YOU say, these services can also track the spending habits of those in your network. The theory being that if those in your network are responsible individuals with good credit, then you are more likely to be financially responsible. And let’s say that your social network is full of individuals with bad credit? Well… you get the idea.
What Can You Do as a Social Media User?
(1) Keep your settings private – make sure that no one outside your network can see what you are saying.
(2) Keep your network private. No one needs to know who your friends are.
(3) Be careful what you write. If you don’t want it known to the public, don’t put it out there in the public.