Vivint Smart Homes Inc., a smart home company, has agreed to pay $20 million to settle a complaint that the company illegally used customer credit card information to help unqualified customers obtain funding, the Federal Trade Commission announced. “Vivint’s sales staff stole people’s personal information to approve others for loans,” said Daniel Kaufman, a leader at FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. The company will pay $15 million in a civil penalty and another $5 million to compensate affected customers. The FTC’s complaint alleges that Vivint used a tactic called “White Paging,” where the company would use White Pages to find people with similar names as potential customers. The company would then use the White Pages person’s credit information in order to qualify the new customer for financing. Vivint would also allegedly ask unqualified customers to provide the name of someone they knew with better credit, before listing those names as cosigners without permission.
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