Credit score by Alibaba applicable for visa applications to Japan or Luxembourg

2017-06-09 15:08 CGTN Editor: Li Yan

Sesame Credit, a credibility scoring system used on Alibaba's Ant Financial platforms, could be used as supporting documents for visa applications to Japan and Luxembourg, the People's Daily reported on Thursday, citing the company's announcement.

Ant Financial users with a score of at least 750 for Japan, or 700 for Luxembourg, on the scale which ranges from 350 to 900, will be "exempt from the normally required process of submitting bank records when applying through Alibaba's travel-booking service provider for visas," said the statement.

This is Alibaba's latest move to promote its credit-scoring system. In the past, providing the service for Luxembourg visas could only be applied in Shanghai and the provinces of Fujian, Zhejiang, Jiangsu and Anhui. Meanwhile, the one for Japan was available for users in Beijing, Tianjin, the provinces of Hebei, Hubei, Henan, Hunan, Shanxi, Qinghai, Gansu, Shaanxi and autonomous regions of Inner Mongolia and Ningxia.

In 2015, Ant Financial also encouraged its users to apply for visas to Singapore with their Sesame Credit score instead of using their bank reports.

Another recent move is that a person's credit score could be exchanged for the funds they put in the accounts of the country's popular bike sharing companies.

China's central bank the People's Bank of China, has commented specifically on this move, saying that the sharing of application users' private data and credit scores is a marketing plan that goes against the idea of privacy, according to the bank's Credit Information System Bureau director Wan Cunzhi.

Also, Wan added the scores are often a poor reference for an individual's actual financial trustworthiness.

Alibaba's Ant Financial is currently world's largest third-party payment platform, running the platforms of Alipay and Yu'e Bao.

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