WHAT SHOULD I DO IF I AM A VICTIM OF A LOAN SCAM?

In the event that you have already become a victim of a loan scam, it is important that you be proactive and report the crime. You don't want your perpetrator to get away with the offence or rip anyone else off.

Develop a narrative
Begin by writing down as much info about your situation. Try and include all that you can recall, but keep it to the point. Begin by detailing how the scammer initially approached you and all the steps in between to the point you were ripped off. You are likely going to be asked 'what happened' by multiple agencies. Therefore, it is a good idea that you write your story down so that you are consistent, coherent and complete. The course of recreating the details of the scam will enable you to remember everything.

Communicate the crime to the FTC
The FTC (Federal Trade Commission) is the first agency you should file your complaint with. They will provide you with complete instructions on how to file a complaint.

Communicate the crime to the IC3
The IC3 (Internet Crime Complaint Center) is run by the National White Collar Crime Center and the FBI. Once they are finished processing your complaint, they will submit it to the suitable law enforcement agency for further investigation.

Contact the Police
Get in touch with the police where the crime took place. For example, if the scammer provided you with an Akron, Ohio address, contact the Akron, Ohio police. However, it is likely the scammer utilized a fake address. If a phony address has been used, the police will likely be of little help. You can also try reporting the crime to your local police. However, as mentioned above, if a fake address has been used, the scammer will be very difficult to track down. All in all, it is still extremely important that you have a police report on file and that you obtain a copy of said report for your own records.

Write a Letter to All Three Credit Bureaus
It is very likely that this scam is going to reach beyond your finances and into your credit report. Since you applied for a loan, it is likely that the scammer will have sensitive information like your social security number, address, phone number, etc.. Therefore, you are going to need to file fraud alerts with the three major credit reporting agencies to avoid becoming a victim of identity theft. Each of the bureaus will send you free copies of your credit report once your fraud complaints have been filed. Examine all of your credit reports closely and determine if any of the accounts listed were open fraudulently, without your permission. If you are unfamiliar with credit reports, you can learn how to read a credit report.

If you fall victim to a loan scam, feel free to contact us. We will do our best to try and help you.

Related Reading:
Spotting Loan Scams
Avoiding Loan Scams


 

 


 

 

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