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Google app enables banks to lock Android devices over credit defaults

Google app enables banks to lock Android devices over credit defaults

Google has released an app that enables banks and credit providers to remotely lock a mobile phone if the user fails to make installment payments.

Spotted by the Android forum at XDA Developers, the Device Lock Controller app uses the DeviceAdminService API in the Android system and enables banks and financers to lock significant functionalities of the device if the user misses a monthly payment.

With the device locked, users are able to access a limited number of restricted functions, such as emergency calls, incoming and select outgoing calls, settings, and backup and restore service.

According to Google, the app was developed in concert with Kenyan mobile money carrrier Safaricom.

A spokesperson from Google told XDA that the app was developed to help Safaricom with its new “Lipa Mdogo Mdogo” (Pay Bit by Bit) financing plan which lets customers get an Android Go device with monthly financing.

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Comments: (2)

Hosam Dahb
Hosam Dahb - Alex Bank - Cairo 09 November, 2020, 15:33Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

Need more details and clarifications please.

Ketharaman Swaminathan
Ketharaman Swaminathan - GTM360 Marketing Solutions - Pune 09 November, 2020, 17:342 likes 2 likes

When I read that Apple was approving people with subprime credit scores for its Apple Card, I joked that Apple could always lock the borrower's iPhone if they defaulted on their credit card bill. I never thought Google would say it's no laughing matter.

Also Bank locks car when driver is late on loan repayment, as I highlighted in my blog post Will You, Won't You, Will You, Won't You Get Your Blockchain App?.

Looks like Blockchain is not required for these apps.