An Online Payday Loan? Don’t Even Think About It (Or Look Into It)
Friday, May 03, 2013
Payday loans can trap borrowers in a cycle of debt, with loans of just a few hundred dollars carrying an annual interest rate of more than 600 percent. We shut down payday lending through storefront locations several years ago in North Carolina, but some overseas and tribal payday lenders continue to make loans online.
People who apply for a payday loan online, or even request information, can find themselves targeted by scammers.
In some cases their confidential personal information, such as bank account numbers, is sold to a scammer after the consumer fills out an online payday loan application. Unauthorized withdrawals from their accounts follow. In other instances scammers operate fake payday loan websites and use private information from consumers’ applications to steal money from their accounts.
Meanwhile, some people who merely visit a payday loan website and provide their phone number or email address are being targeted. Phony debt collectors call and email, insisting that the consumer owes money. They harass and threaten the consumer, and may even claim to be with law enforcement or government. They’re hoping the consumer will pay just to make the calls stop.
Taking out a payday loan was always a bad idea and now it’s even riskier. Don’t let anyone bully or intimidate you into paying money you don’t owe. There are laws that control legitimate debt collection practices
. Report debt collection scams to the Attorney General’s Office by calling 1-877-5-NO-SCAM or filing a consumer complaint online at www.ncdoj.gov