Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam
Question: Assalam alaykum
Is having a “saving” account with Digit permissible?
The way it works is that it withdraws a few dollars every few days and keeps the user updated regarding the saved amount. The user does not get any interest on the saved amount, neither does he pay any fees for the service. Any interested accumulated, however, goes to the service as the fee.
Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,
No, you cannot use the service “Digit” to save your money. This is according to their current policies and practice.
The basis is that interest (riba) is categorically impermissible in the Sacred Law (shari`ah). Consequently, most savings accounts are problematic because you accrue some form of benefit by depositing your money therein. Legally, such a deposit is a loan to the bank, and loans which accrue benefits are impermissible.
In this case, Digit is a financial tool, yet it facilitates for your money to be transferred to a standard [interest-bearing] bank account. Despite the fact that you have no say in the interest accruing on the funds, nor do you benefit from it, you still receive a separate “savings bonus,” which is essentially another form of impermissible interest.
Allah Most High says, “But those who take usury will rise up on the Day of Resurrection like someone tormented by Satan’s touch. That is because they say, ‘Trade and usury are the same,’ but God has allowed trade and forbidden usury.” [2.275]
[Usmani, Fiqh al-Buyu` (2.1062); AAOIFI, Shari`ah Standards (520-521)]
And Allah Most High alone knows best.
[Ustadh] Tabraze Azam
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Ustadh Tabraze Azam holds a BSc in Computer Science from the University of Leicester, where he also served as the President of the Islamic Society. He memorised the entire Qur’an in his hometown of Ipswich at the tender age of sixteen, and has since studied the Islamic Sciences in traditional settings in the UK, Jordan and Turkey. He is currently pursuing advanced studies in Jordan, where he is presently based with his family.