- ASIC is aware of people pretending to be a legitimate lender (e.g. banks, credit unions) and offering fake loans to Australian consumers. This usually occurs after the consumer completes an online enquiry form expressing interest in a loan.
- Be wary of unexpected calls, SMSs or emails offering loans that ask for personal information.
- Avoid loan offers that have upfront fees for ‘insurance’ or ‘tax’.
Examples of how fake loan offers work
ASIC is aware of scammers using a number of tactics to offer fake loans to Australians. Scams can take place when someone contacts you by email or text saying you are approved for a loan and asks you for your personal information. Other scams use an online loan enquiry form, send you a loan offer and ask for more personal information.
Below are some examples of common tactics used by scammers:
- The ‘lender’ is using an email account with a free provider (such as Gmail or Outlook). Legitimate lenders are unlikely to use free email providers.
- The lender doesn’t have a website.
- You are asked to make a payment for some sort of insurance or tax before they can release the loan funds.
- An invoice asks for you to make payment by direct deposit into a bank account in the name of a person (not the name of the lender).
- Requesting copies of your ID or a photo of you with your ID.
Think you have been scammed?
If you think you or someone you know has been scammed, lodge a report of misconduct with ASIC and report the matter to police. You can also make a report to the Australian Cyber Security Centre at ReportCyber. Your report may disrupt the scammers and hopefully will warn others to avoid it.
ASIC is Australia’s corporate, markets and financial services regulator.