AirBnB needs access to my contact list?

I just tried to book a place listed on AirBnB. I got through a bunch of steps, including authorizing payment via PayPal, and giving the last 4 digits of my SSN (?).

I finally reached a step where they want me to grant access to my Google account, including my list of contacts (!) I draw the line at this, and so I will not be staying at the place where I’d hoped to.

Why are they doing this? Are they not losing considerable business this way?

I just joined AirBnB myself, and I didn’t get this level of intrusive requests. I understand why they ask for a fair amount of info about you - you’re staying in other people’s homes, and they want to be able to definitively identify you. But I set up payment through a regular credit card (not Paypal, which always makes things harder) and I certainly didn’t give it any of my google account information. I can’t remember if it asked, but I was able to reserve and pay with no problem without it.

Thoughts: are you sure you’re on a real AirBnb site? Could you be on a scam page trying to get the same info? Did you sign up with AirBnB via your google account? (Maybe that’s why it’s asking for the google account info.)

Various websites including Steam, YouTube, Amazon, etc. all try and get you to give your phone number and other information under the guise of being better able to protect your account. :rolleyes:

Apparently, this is not a new thing with Airbnb. This Reddit thread from September 2014 mentions the same thing.