❝ A new startup is selling details of the online activity log of your life, taking the screening of potential new housing tenants to a new level. Not dissimilar to China’s Sesame Credit — which incorporates online and offline data to generate people’s credit scores — a British company is selling dossiers on people’s social media profiles to everyone, from your landlord to potential employers.
❝ …As if the world of private renting were not already beset by often insurmountable hurdles, the British startup is now profiting from the misery and helping your potential landlord suss out prospective tenants by mining personal data.
Tenant Assured, the first product of U.K. startup, Source Assured, boasts “insightful referencing like never before.” For a bulk subscription fee, a landlord can use the service to profile would-be tenants. After the landlord’s request is sent, the prospective renter must grant the service full access to their Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram profiles.
❝ From there, the process scrapes the individual’s site activity. It scans entire conversation threads and public posts to record information on the the renter’s personality. Eventually, a report is produced detailing, among other things, the individual’s “financial stress level.” Although the landlord doesn’t directly view the social media posts, the report includes information on “activity times” and whether the prospective tenant mentions words like “no money,” “being poor,” “staying in,” “terrorist,” “fraud,” and “justice.”…
❝ Source Assured co-founder Steve Thornhill’s attempt to reassure people is as creepy as his product. “If you’re living a normal life then, frankly, you have nothing to worry about,” he said.
Of course, stalking and spying on people is considered “normal” by Thornhill.