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Sunday, 21 October 2018

Central bank wants to roll mobile phone records into the calculation of your credit score

** #7 The central bank wants to take mobile phone records into account when credit scores are calculated: Mobile network operators could be forced to make records of bill payments on customer accounts available to state-backed credit rating agency iScore under an initiative that has the backing of the Central Bank of Egypt and Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, sources told Al Mal. The two institutions are looking into the regulatory and legislative changes necessary to make that possible.

Part of financial inclusion drive? Reading between the lines, the changes would, if enacted, be a prelude to the CBE’s drive to expand the availability of microcredit. With as few as one in every three Egyptians being ‘banked’ (the exact definition varies), the initiative looks set to have iScore assign credit ratings based on mobile phone and electricity bills and other indicators of creditworthiness even if the individual isn’t formally part of the banking system.

Background: CBE Sub-Governor for Payment Systems and Business Technology Ayman Hussein said last month that the CBE is looking at introducing nano lending — providing mobile-based cash loans — as part of the third phase of its mobile banking strategy. He had said that iScore would be required to provide credit ratings for users for the system to work.

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