Well done humanity – you have once again sunk to a new low.
Do you remember getting your first loan? It may have been for your first car, your first holiday or even a credit card. Whatever it was, do you remember feeling nervous as you went to the bank and signed your life away?
Well, leave it to China to take things to the next level.
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Loan sharks are now offering loans with a very unique and racy form of collateral: nude selfies.
This gives borrowers a massive incentive, as your debtor will reveal your naked photos online if you fail to repay on time.
Shockingly, this is becoming a growing trend for many young females students throughout China. It’s largely facilitated through peer-to-peer lending platforms, where everyday people lend their money to cash-strapped folks for high interest rates.
In this instance, a perquisite to the whole transaction is that women must hand over their student card along with their naked images, to ensure they’re not trading in someone else’s photos.
And that’s not all: one newspaper reporter posed as a potential client, in an effort to get evidence of loan sharks demanding naked photos. She said that the dodgy debtors also demanded personal information from borrowers, including phone numbers, ID numbers, home addresses, parents’ names and their roommate’s contact information – all of which the lenders threatened to make public, should the borrower default.
To make matters worse, the loans aren’t even affordable. They are offered with a whooping interest rate of up to 30% attached, so it’s clear to see that the only women who go down this path must be completely desperate.
There are so many levels of dubiousness to this.
It’s unregulated, unsafe and unlawful – and at the end of the day, who’s to say the people involved will keep their word and not publish your nude selfies?
Word on the street is that since the undercover reporter’s story was published, the loan sharks involved apparently suspended the practice.
But sadly, they probably haven’t disappeared. More than likely, they’ve just gone underground for a short period, before they’ll pop up in another dark corner of the internet to prey on the vulnerable.