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Online credit record search grows in China

2013-10-29 07:56 China Daily Web Editor: qindexing

Pilot program expands from 3 provincial-level governments to 9

People in nine provinces can now search online for their credit information as of Monday thanks to a pilot program from the People's Bank of China, the country's central bank.

Providing the online service is important to guarantee that the public has access to their credit records, the central bank's Credit Reference Center said on its website.

Chinese people searching their credit records must go through a five-step verification procedure, according to a statement by the center.

Registered website users are able to search for a variety of information within the past five years, including whether they have been tardy in paying their credit card or mortgage loans, the Public Security Bureau of Shenzhen in Guangdong province said on its micro blog on Monday.

People must register at the center's website (https:/ipcrs.pbccrc.org.cn/) before beginning a search. They have to answer five questions that verify their identities, such as their private credit limit, within 10 minutes. If they fail the verification procedure, they can register by verifying their ID through U-shield — a digital certificate recorded on USB flash drives commonly issued by banks.

Guo Jianguang, an associate professor at the School of Finance of the Central University of Finance and Economics, said people are expected to be more aware of their credit records and the availability of the online record search.

"In many developed countries such as the United States, people with bad credit records can hardly get a loan or even a job,"he said. "The establishment of a credit record system in China lags behind the country's economic development."

The Credit Reference Center has experimented with a credit record search system since March 27 in Chongqing as well as Jiangsu and Sichuan provinces.

On Monday, the pilot project was expanded to six others — Beijing, Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region as well as Liaoning, Shandong, Hunan and Guangdong provinces.

The Shenzhen Public Security Bureau's micro blog said the project is expected to expand to all provinces nationwide next year after the pilot provinces iron out any issues.

On Monday, the first day the search option was made available, the website for the Credit Reference Center of the People's Bank of China was unavailable for a short period of time, eliciting complaints from many netizens.

China Daily's phone calls to the Credit Reference Center of the People's Bank of China went unanswered on Monday.

Netizens have also expressed worries that their private information could be leaked.

"I always receive various advertisement text messages on my cell phone because my private information was leaked,"said Wang Jing, a magazine editor in Beijing.

The Credit Reference Center's website claimed in a statement that its employees received training on July 19 to ensure that customers' personal information is kept safe.

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