The "violent collection" of Internet banks needs to be dealt with urgently

author:Lujiazui Financial Network
The "violent collection" of Internet banks needs to be dealt with urgently

CFIC Introduction

With massive data resources, risk control capabilities and platform traffic advantages, the co-lending model of Internet banks has developed rapidly. According to the data, at present, the total loan balance of Internet banks has exceeded one trillion yuan. With the continuous increase in the scale of online credit in mainland China, the chaos of "violent collection" of some Internet banks has also followed.

Original title: When will the "violent collection" of Internet banks be closed?

"Make more than a dozen phone calls a day", "Use a private phone to pretend to be a platform to induce me to repay the loan first and then cash out", "Steal personal information, read the address book, and contact relatives, friends and colleagues without permission", "I am willing to repay, but I am currently in financial difficulties, and I violently collect money without negotiation, and the elderly in my family are intimidated and hospitalized...... On the Black Cat and Consumer Insurance complaint platforms, there are numerous complaints about the "violent collection" of some Internet banks.

Internet banking is a new type of bank based on the application of big data technology and providing customers with online financial transaction services away from traditional bank counters. In mainland China, Internet banks are mainly private banks in the form of pure Internet operations, focusing on serving the general public and small and micro enterprises, and the advantage is that they use digital technology to lower the financing threshold, which has become a useful supplement to the current financial market system in mainland China.

Loan business is one of the main businesses of Internet banks, among which joint loan is a loan model adopted by most Internet banks, that is, Internet banks cooperate with other banks or leading Internet companies and other institutions to carry out loan business.

With massive data resources, risk control capabilities and platform traffic advantages, the co-lending model of Internet banks has developed rapidly. According to the data, at present, the total loan balance of Internet banks has exceeded one trillion yuan.

With the continuous increase in the scale of online credit in mainland China, the chaos of "violent collection" of some Internet banks has also followed.

Some internet banks

It has become a hard-hit area of "violent collection".

A reporter from Newsweek searched for "bank violent collection" on the Black Cat complaint platform, and the results showed that there were nearly 20,000 complaints, including a number of leading Internet banks.

The reporter combed and found that frequent text messages "bombardment" and "call you to death" telephone harassment are the most common collection methods faced by overdue customers of Internet banks.

A consumer said that the collector of an Internet bank made several calls in a row, and then hung up after a short ring. The most recent time he did not complete the answer within 25 seconds, he was judged to have lost contact. Another consumer also said that after his loan was overdue, he had negotiated with the platform company to agree on a repayment extension, but he was still subject to phone calls during the extension period.

In addition, some Internet banks will also illegally obtain the borrower's address book information and collect it through a "third party", resulting in the borrower's relatives, friends and even colleagues being disturbed by the collection company, and some collectors even directly ask the consumer's company for personal information such as salary slips.

A consumer complained on the consumer service protection platform Consumer Insurance that the collection staff entrusted by an Internet bank contacted the work unit of him and his family without his consent, leaked the loan information of the person concerned and threatened to repay the loan, which seriously violated his personal privacy.

Not only that, but individual collectors may also resort to other extreme methods to collect money. For example, a consumer of an Internet bank was once collected by posters in the community, and his personal situation was known to the residents of the entire community.

Nie Yangcheng, a lawyer at Beijing Kangda Law Firm, publicly stated that individual collectors will fraudulently use the names of administrative organs and judicial organs to collect by improper means such as intentional injury, illegal detention, insult, slander, intimidation, verbal assault, etc., and some will collect cash and other property from the collection targets without permission, or induce or coerce them to raise funds to repay debts through new loans or illegal channels.

There is a lack of regulation and penalties

As early as 2021, the Consumer Rights Protection Bureau of the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission notified Sichuan Xinwang Bank Co., Ltd. of a case of infringement of the legitimate rights and interests of consumers, saying that the bank had problems such as the lack of a corresponding management system for SMS collection and the incomplete operation procedures for telephone collection.

In recent years, the mainland has successively promulgated a number of policies, such as the Convention on Self-Discipline for the Collection of Overdue Debts in Internet Finance (for Trial Implementation) and the Measures for the Administration of Consumer Finance Companies, to regulate the collection behavior of Internet banks, but the phenomenon of "violent collection" has not persisted.

Lawyer Li Weiyu, director of Tianjin Jixian Law Firm, said that at present, the scale of personal non-performing loans of some Internet financial institutions has risen, the number of cases of small loan contract disputes is huge, and the time cost and litigation cost of taking legal channels are too high, so they choose to outsource the collection business. Due to the uneven management and operation level of outsourced collection companies, the quality of collection personnel is not high, resulting in a large number of complaints, and even civil, administrative, and criminal cases.

According to data, at the end of 2022, the non-performing loan ratio of Xinwang Bank was 1.73%, MYbank's was 1.94%, and Jiangsu Suning Bank's was 0.99%.

At the same time, the financial supervision of collection enterprises is not in place, which also increases the phenomenon of violent collection.

Han Li, a senior partner at Beijing DeHeng (Tianjin) Law Firm, believes that at present, the mainland has relatively strict control over commercial banks, and they need to obtain qualifications issued by relevant state departments to operate, but there is no licensing system for debt collection companies, and there is no complete set of regulatory mechanisms for their control.

Zhang Zhipo, an associate professor at Nankai University's School of Law, also said that some Internet banks and collection agencies have agreed to share, and the more money collected, the more the collection agency will get. Driven by economic interests, collection agencies often "go to great lengths".

In addition, Han Li said that the "violent collection" behavior bound to Internet banks is less included in the criminal crackdown, "unless the collection process causes serious consequences such as death or injury to others, or reaches the level of seriously disrupting social order and causing bad social impact, can it meet the criminal law prosecution standard." ”

The reporter learned that the behavior of general collection companies can only be regulated by the "Public Security Administration Punishment Law of the People's Republic of China", because collection companies often operate in different places, affected by jurisdiction, and in practice, "violent collection" is subject to less administrative penalties.

On this basis, many consumers lack experience in dealing with "violent collection", and do not understand effective ways to protect their rights, and are often powerless.

It is urgent to standardize the collection methods of Internet loans

The reporter found that the "violent collection" of Internet banks has brought online lending into a vicious circle: Internet banks cannot recover loans due to legal procedures to protect their rights, so they hire third-party collection companies to reduce non-performing loans; Violent collection "violates the law" with low costs and consumers lack ways to protect their rights, resulting in the intensification of violent collection...... "multiple defeats and losses" hurting the overall credit of the society.

It is urgent to take multiple measures to standardize the collection methods of Internet loans and create a clear online financial lending environment.

First of all, the obligation of prior review of Internet banks should be strengthened. Experts believe that banks should do a good job of due diligence when lending, and seek sufficient means of guarantee to avoid high-risk business. Han Li suggested that Internet banks should strictly review the borrower's borrowing conditions before lending, so as to avoid non-performing loans at the root and reduce the need for collection.

Second, raise the entry threshold for debt collection companies and strengthen legal training for collection personnel. Zhang Zhipo said that the threshold for the establishment of collection companies should be raised, standardized, institutionalized and standardized, and at the same time, the illegal and criminal judgments of violent collection should be widely publicized to improve the legal awareness of collectors.

Finally, establish a long-term complaint feedback mechanism to broaden the channels for consumer rights protection. Lawyers such as Li Weiyu and Han Li believe that consumers should do a good job of collecting and retaining evidence of "violent collection", report and complain to the relevant regulatory authorities, and seek help from the police if the collection is suspected of violating the law. In addition, it is also necessary to accelerate the implementation of the mechanism of batch filing, expedited adjudication, expedited adjustment and online and offline multi-channel resolution of micro-loan litigation cases, for example, special trial courts can be set up, the number of people's mediators can be increased, and batch mediation and enforcement of claims against Internet banks should be given priority.

Source of this article: "Outlook" Issue 16, 2024

Author: Song Rui

WeChat editor: Wang Qian

Introduction to "Risk Warning: Financial Edition".

The "violent collection" of Internet banks needs to be dealt with urgently

Finance is the lifeblood of the modern economy, and financial stability leads to economic stability. Financial security is related to the overall development of national and regional enterprises, and it is necessary to maintain a high degree of vigilance against financial risks at all times, enhance the awareness of risk prevention, respond scientifically, and prevent them from occurring. Under the guidance of the authoritative government departments, relying on the advanced big data public opinion monitoring system and a professional analyst team, the "Risk Warning Financial Edition" produced by the China Financial Information Center summarizes, analyzes, and judges the risk public opinion in different fields and categories of the financial industry, and provides authoritative, professional, practical, timely and effective financial risk public opinion monitoring, research and judgment, early warning and response suggestions for financial regulatory departments, factor markets, financial institutions, listed companies, industry associations, various enterprises, colleges and universities, research institutions, etc. 18,000 per year, once a week, released every Friday.

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