Opera has frequently tried to maintain the moral high ground within the web browser world. However, it’s being accused of using its side projects for much less virtuous behavior. Hindenburg Research has revealed a report alleging that Opera is running four Android apps aimed at India, Kenya, and Nigeria that seem like in direct violation of Google Play Store policies forbidding predatory loans and misleading descriptions. The apps would claim to offer the most annual percentage rate (APR) of 33 % or much less. However, the actual charges had been a lot larger, climbing to 438 % within the case of OPesa. And whereas they publicly provided reasonable loan phrases of 91 to 365 days, the exact size was no longer than 29 days (for OKash) and more often 15 days — effectively below Google’s 60-day minimum.
The conditions only received worse for debtors who missed their payments. Falling short by only a day may increase the APR as excessive as 876 %. Additionally, the apps reportedly scraped telephone contacts to harass households, friends, and others with calls and texts in hopes this might stress clients into paying up. These identical notices typically threatened authorized motion. And the results aren’t trivial. Many users are young people whose financial futures and even careers may be in jeopardy with credit trouble on their records.