Chinese App Developed That Tells You When You're Near Someone In Debt
The authorities in China have allegedly developed an app that can tell people if they are within close proximity to someone who is in debt.
It has been reported in Chinese state media that the app was created by government officials in the province of Hebei and is aimed towards getting the public to keep an eye out for those who are amassing debt.
So, what have they called this app I hear you ask? Well, the 'map of deadbeat debtors', of course.
That could just be a bad translation, but it seems as if this bizarre app actually does exist.
It's not clear exactly how much debt you've got to be in to be included on the app, and it isn't known whether any personal information is displayed, but the technology will alert the user once they come within 500 metres of someone in debt, according to the reports.
Should people wish to access this, you'll have to be in Hebei province - obviously - but also have Chinese social media app WeChat.
There's another thing, too. They want the people using the app to dob the debtors in, as well.
China Daily has reported that the app exists to let people "whistle-blow on debtors capable of paying their debts."
You see, being in debt is a massive social taboo in China. Citizens are expected to be saving and not overspending. Those in debt are supposed to be embarrassed about it.
This app seems to be a dead certain way to make sure of that.
It comes at a time in which China is trying to have a large scale back on how much it is lending to people - especially if they can't pay it back. The existing social credit system is being drastically overhauled at the minute to support this.
Under the new rules, which is sort of like a credit score in the UK (and in many other ways nothing at all like that), people are judged on criteria that ranges from their trustworthiness to how they behave when they are on the bus.
The new social credit system will come into force in 2020.
Those in support of the system say that it is necessary because many Chinese people still don't use traditional banks in the way that nearly everyone does in other countries.
That means that stuff like school expenditure for kids, renting a place to live, and paying off any loans needs to be dealt with in a different way.
Featured Image Credit: PA