KANSAS CITY, Mo., April 24, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- April is National Financial Literacy Month and Reform Online Lending is helping to raise consumer awareness of lending scams as a part of its effort to purge the online financial services industry of fraudsters. ROL believes one of the best ways to boost one's financial literacy regarding the online financial marketplace is consumer awareness of scams that occur in that space.
During National Financial Literacy Month, Reform Online Lending is highlighting the most common lending scams that consumers should know about:
- Advance Fee Loan Scams: Consumers search for short-term credit and are promised quick, easy cash after they pay an application fee prior to receiving their loan.
- The reality: No legitimate lender, online or otherwise, will promise credit.
- Phantom Debt Collection Scams/Payday Loan Debt Collection Scams: These predators try, under the pretense of being a judge or lawyer, to collect on debts that do not exist.
- The reality: The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act prohibits collectors from intimidating and threatening behavior. Further, criminal prosecution of past due debts is generally not allowed and should be an indicator of potentially fraudulent behavior.
- Unauthorized Loan Scams: Fraudsters acting as creditors attempt to fund a loan without the borrower's consent, or the scammer tries to cross-sell something, like an expensive membership club, as a condition of loan approval.
- The reality: Some of these predators may in fact extend credit; however, the "lender" will try to put additional charges on a consumer's account for other things like an auto repair club or roadside assistance club, for example. Consumers should know that they have the right to review loan documents and electronically authorize them via e-signature prior to funding. Additionally, buying into a membership club should never be a condition of credit approval.
"Consumers utilize online lenders when they are in a financial bind. There are scammers who try to take advantage of this unfortunate situation. An educated consumer is a safe consumer, and Reform Online Lending is committed to helping consumers get the information they need to stay protected. Together we can help eliminate financial predators in the online marketplace," said Mark Curry, founder of Reform Online Lending.
ReformOnlineLending.org is a program of entrepreneur and industry leader Mark Curry to identify and bring justice to scammers who take advantage of consumers of the online financial services industry. The program is designed to educate American consumers on the scams that are perpetrated in the online lending industry, and to work with government authorities to prosecute scammers who seek to take advantage of the industry's millions of consumers.
Contact: Reform Online Lending
SOURCE Reform Online Lending