Daily Devotional for Friday September 6, 2019

Your social credit score!!!

(1 Timothy 2:1-2 )

***DAILY PERSONAL PRAYER FOR YOU: Lord, Thank You for meeting my daily needs as You have promised in Your Word. I look to You and You alone for my sustenance through life, and Thank You for Your faithfulness. Please help me to be a good steward of the funds You entrust into my care during this life, and give me favor in my finances, and wisdom in my decisions. In the name of Jesus I pray...AMEN!

Did you know you have, or soon will have, a “social credit score?” I’ve got your attention did’t I. Let me make sure I have your FULL attention. This social credit score could one day determine what kind of job you get, where you can live, if you can leave the country, if you can fly or check into a hotel. Now do I have your attention?

China has apx. 1.4 BILLION people. Many years ago, the Chinese government began paying US big tech firms to develop a system to literally track and be in control of EVERY SINGLE PERSON! Oh, and they are doing it!

Now, if you think about it, it really isn’t that hard to understand. Numbers are a bit difficult to pin down, but apx. 40 million packages worldwide every day are handled by FedEx, UPS, USPS, DHL. As you probably know, you are able to pretty much tack your package from the moment it leaves your hands until the moment it is delivered, no matter where in the world it is going.

So we do have mechanisms that exist to accurately track massive numbers items. While the Chinese have not yet, and I emphasize, not yet, put a tracking code on each one of its’ citizens, they are still able to fairly accurately keep track of their apx. 1.4 billion citizens in a massive data base.

Several years ago the Chinese government began working with US big tech companies to create a computer program to assign every one of their citizens a social credit score. This social credit score has a profound impact on the daily lives of Chinese citizens.

Here are some of the things that affect that score. Being a Christian or part of any faith group impacts your score negatively. Other things that have a negative impact are having unpaid debts, playing excessive video games, being a critic of the government, not keeping your home or business clean, playing loud music, and breaking any laws.

Helping your social credit score are things like taking care of elderly parents, being a law abiding citizen, charitable efforts, and as you can imagine, supporting the Chinese government.

Now, while much of these issues, positive and negative are accessible through public records, it is obvious many are only known by personal observation. You have to understand in Communist China or any repressive regime, there are government spies everywhere. EVERYWHERE. People you would never suspect report the things they see to the government.

So, what is the impact on a person having a poor social credit score? Based on their score they can be banned from using public transportation. They can be banned from flying. They can be prohibited from leaving the country. They can be banned from being able to check into a hotel. It can be impossible to get a decent job. Their internet connection can be slowed way down. They can become social outcasts.

I realize this sounds crazy. However, think about this for a minute. In this country we have our FICO score, or our credit score. This is not something YOU initiated. As a matter of fact, it is not something you had any control over having or not having. It is virtually impossible to live many years without acquiring a FICO score. You almost have to not even exist to avoid having a FICO score.

Even though this is not something you “signed up for” and “requested,” virtually everyone realizes that they DO have this FICO score and the importance of it if you are trying to buy a home, buy a car, or buy a washing machine. It is a score that follows you throughout your entire life, and again, is critical if you ever try to get credit to buy anything.

Many people think the government controls the FICO score, or the credit reporting agencies. The fact is, Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian, the main three credit reporting companies, are private businesses. The government has no real control over them. Now they have put in place procedures for people to challenge their credit score, but anyone who has ever had to fight that battle knows it is a long, tedious process that will test your patience.

I am sure some of you may find all of this very informative, maybe interesting, but so what. Here is the so what. US based big tech companies put together the computer programs the Chinese government has been using for several years now to assign EVERY ONE OF THEIR APX. 1.4 BILLION PEOPLE A SOCIAL CREDIT SCORE.

Light bulbs are going off! Yes, and trust me when I tell you, there will be some sort of consortium of private companies, just like Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian in the credit reporting world, to use this existing computer infrastructure to assign every person in the US a social credit score. Whether you want it or not!

While there is no way at this moment to confirm it, there are reports that it is already happening. People are already being assigned a social credit score, even though they don’t even know what it is or how it will be used.

Think for a moment. This type of a “score” would be incredibly valuable for employers, insurance companies, colleges, really any place that you are interested in being affiliated with. Businesses and organizations would pay a firm, just like business pay the big 3 credit reporting agencies, to have your social credit score and the factors that make it up.

My guess is that it would be made up of the incredible volume of existing public information. Public records are accessible regarding your criminal history if any, of course your credit history, your driving record, some school and medical records, and so much more. There are tons of “investigative” websites where you pay $30 or more to literally find out virtually everything there is to know about a person. THESE DATA BASES ALREADY EXIST!

So utilizing just current existing data bases of public records, a company could end up assigning a person a social credit score. Obviously, how they determine that number, how they weigh information, all of that really will be left up to the company that puts this together. YOU WON’T HAVE A SAY AT HOW GOOD OR HOW BAD YOUR SOCIAL CREDIT SCORE IS...AND IT WILL AFFECT MANY ASPECTS OF YOUR LIFE!!!

I love you and care about you so much. I am NOT trying to scare you, I don’t do that and never have. I am trying, as I do so often, to make you aware of things that ARE COMING and will affect your life in some way, positively and negatively. No doubt once this becomes more public there will be a truckload of lawsuits. There will have to be some understanding how this score is arrived at, and most important what it means.

However, this IS going to happen, and no doubt already is in the beginning stages as we speak. It is further along than I even thought when the other day out of the blue I saw an article floating the use of your social credit score as a possible way of determining if you can own a firearm. I was a bit amazed, since technically in this country, we don’t have a social credit score.

But since it has been in use for years now in China, and no doubt other countries will be utilizing this sort of scoring of its’ citizens, and our own big tech companies actually created the computer programs, it is not a matter of if...only when.

As we have now crossed the line and are in a post-God, post-Christian nation, like in China I am certain being a Christian will certainly not have a positive impact of our social credit score. So it will just be another challenge for Christians to face. It is not like our brothers and sisters in Christ in the early days of the faith were treated as royalty by the Roman government that ruled over them.

May we never forget, man can give us a score for whatever they want, but the only score that matters is the Jesus score. When you die and take your last breath, that is the only score God will be looking at! If you have never made that decision for Christ, or know someone who needs to know Jesus, here is the link to have your sins forgiven, accept Christ into your heart and life by faith, and receive his promise of everlasting life!!!

God’s Plan of Salvation: https://liveprayer.com/salvation.cfm

In His love and service,

Your friend and brother in Christ,

Bill Keller