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New Startup Helps Landlords Screen Potential Tenants' Social Media Posts

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Your Facebook rants could become part of the tenancy approval process

Soon, renters may have to submit their social media accounts alongside their credit score and pay stubs to be considered for an apartment. U.K.-based data startup Score Assured is offering a new social media-analysis service to landlords who want some extra insights into the wealth of prospective renters.

Named Tenant Assured, the service scrapes information from a renter’s accounts on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram, analyzing elements like word choice and interests to create a character profile that helps determine if they can pay rent. The resulting report includes evaluations of the individual’s levels of credit, employment, fraud, and financial stress, along with ratings of their personality traits and other personal information.

Invasion of privacy? Technically no. Aspiring renters have to consent to the service before their accounts are analyzed. But as Score Assured cofounder Steve Thornhill told the Washington Post: "People will give up their privacy to get something they want."