When borrowing money, be extremely suspicious if you’re asked to pay money upfront. Legitimate lenders will not ask you to pay anything upfront.
How to identify those suspicious fake loan scams?
- A company that claims to be a registered Australian company or Australian Credit Licensee may call or email you regarding a loan that you are qualified for without you making an application.
- You may be asked to make an upfront payment before you get the loan for items like loan insurance, tax or initial repayments etc.
- The email you receive may be from a generic email address and not a company email address.
- You may be offered the lowest interest rate and the approved loan amount may be more than you require.
Your to-do list before applying for a loan from small lenders
- Avoid replying to an email or click links from an email. Always check for the company’s public listed phone number and contact them directly. This is the most important step as scammers are experts in impersonating a legitimate company.
- Check ASIC’s list of unlicensed companies. Immediately stop further dealings with them if you find them in this list.
- Search in ASIC Connect’s Professional Registers to see if the lender is licensed by ASIC.
- Search their Australian Company Number on ASIC Connect.
Things to do if you are scammed
- Do not respond to their calls or emails.
- Report the scam to ASIC
- File a police report at your nearest police station
- Report to your bank and cancel your credit card if you have provided the information to the scammer.
- Warn your family and friends and put yourself on the Do not call register to reduce telemarketing calls