June 25, 2024

The Anti-Cybercrime Department of the Ministry of Interior advises the public to carefully scrutinise companies that promise easy online loans.

The department, in a note of caution published on January 16, highlights the shrewdness of these deceivers. They create phony social media accounts and pose as legal entities offering easy online loans. These schemes have been chiefly designed to catch those seeking swift and simple financial aid.

The department explains that these scammers ask for sensitive personal information such as national identity cards and service fees, supposedly for enabling the loan process. But the promised loan never comes through, and the victims end up losing the money transferred to these masquerading loan providers.

Public members searching for loans, the department enjoins, particularly online, must be vigilant and diligently review lenders before applying for loans.

The rights group LICADHO’s operations director, Am Sam Ath, highlights the conundrum caused by online loans. He states that while the victims find themselves ensnared, the offenders evade identification.

He suggests that issuing warnings is not enough—there needs to be legal pursuit against those misusing the internet for illegal activities, making threats, and disseminating explicit images. Given that the involved offenders often hide online, rigorous legal solutions are required to hold them accountable.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Why are online loan scams so widespread?

Online loan scams persist due to the convenience and anonymity provided by the internet. Scammers can hide their identity and location, making it difficult for authorities to catch them. Additionally, the promise of quick and easy loans often entices individuals facing financial difficulties.

2. What steps can I take to avoid falling victim to an online loan scam?

To avoid online loan scams, always research the lending company thoroughly. Check for customer reviews and any possible scam reports related to the company. Avoid sharing personal information online, especially if the source is not verified. Also, be skeptical of any loan offer that requires advance payment or promises approval regardless of credit history.

3. What should I do if I have fallen victim to an online loan scam?

If you have fallen victim to an online loan scam, report the incident to your local law enforcement and your bank, especially if you’ve shared banking details or made payments to the scammers. Also, file a complaint with the Anti-Cybercrime department or similar agency in your country. Additionally, consider consulting with a legal professional to understand your rights and possible recourse.