AIB has been accused of using Facebook to spy on borrowers.
The Irish Independent reports that the bank is demanding access to social media as part of the mortgage application process - and is not offering customers a chance to 'opt-out.'
Customers applying for a mortgage with AIB or any of its subsidiaries are now required to sign a consent form providing the access.
AIB claims it helps it to understand customer behaviour.
Charlie Weston, personal finance editor with the Irish Independent said it is “not quite clear” what the bank’s motivations are.
“Is it trying to tailor products towards you by doing some data analytics? Because it does use the phrase data analytics in the consent form,” he said.
“Or is it something more sinister?
“Is the bank going to turn down applications from people whose social media shows that they gamble a lot maybe, or that they are going to anti-eviction protests?”
The bank has insisted it only examines publicly available social media data to monitor social media trends and customer sentiment towards the AIB brand.
It said the data is never used to analyse individual customer behaviours.
Mr Weston said the social media consent clause appears to be mandatory:
“You have to sign this form if you want to get a mortgage because it covers a whole range of things from allowing the bank to do a credit check on you; you are also confirming that the information in the documents that you have given the bank are correct,” he said.
“There is a section on marketing where it says you can opt out of direct marketing.
“But with this section on social media – there is no opt-out on that.”