Scammers are now posing as money lenders and are ripping off Canadians of millions of dollars. That’s according to a report released by the Better Business Bureau saying that fraudulent advance fee loans are the culprit. Advance fee loan scams are when you are asked to send money in response to potentially getting a loan. The BBB says only five per cent of people who are victims will actually make a report. Wes Lafortune, the Media and Communications Specialist for the Better Business Bureau of Southern Alberta and East Kootenay says there are ways you can protect yourself against these types of scams.
“A few other things to watch out for is when it’s an unsolicited text, email or phone call even. You know, just somebody out of the blue offering to lend you money. Big red flag, don’t pay any fees up front. If you’re in a difficult financial situation the best advice is to go talk with your bank, go talk to your credit card company. There are legitimate counseling organizations in Alberta that will provide you very good advice on how to consolidate debt and pay it back in an orderly fashion so you won’t be forced into these kind of desperate situations.”
Lafortune says a total of $12 million has been lost across Canada from advance loan fee scams.