LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) — Reports suggest phony lenders are guaranteeing a quick loan with no upfront fees. This sounds perfect at first, but in the end, victims who provide their banking information to the scammers are left in the red.

According to Chris Babin of the BBB of Acadiana, scammers contact consumers unsolicited telling them that they are eligible for loans of varying amounts. Once you agree to the loan, scammers need a bunch of personal information upfront including credit cards and bank information to be able to process these fake loan checks. Scammers even make themselves seem more trustworthy by posing as legitimate businesses that can be verified online.

“When they deposit it in their account, the supposed lender is telling them that they need to purchase some insurance for the loan and different things, so they send money elsewhere. Two, three days later, the bank lets them know the check doesn’t clear or the funds they send are long gone. The loan was not real, and the financial institution was fake,” says Babin.

Here’s some tips from the BBB on how to avoid fake loan offers:

  • Avoid unsolicited loan offers. Scammers use offers of quick cash to lure you in– don’t fall for it.
  • Expect a credit check. These scams often prey on people who may not easily qualify for a loan.
  • Verify the email address of the sender. The domain for the email address typically matches the domain of the official website.
  • Research loan providers before accepting an offer. View ratings and reviews to see what other people are saying.

If you have a scam you’d like me to investigate, feel free to send me an email at smasters@klfy.com.