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08 Feb 2019
Watch out for get-rich-quick loan scams

Current interest rates are so low that they are forcing would-be savers to try their luck on the stock markets. These, however, continue to be extremely volatile. Nonetheless, some investors or speculators manage to make quite some money, particularly after receiving a golden tip.

One of these people was a 55-year-old resident of the northwestern Dutch town of Medemblik. At least, that’s what he believed. The man needed 880,000 euros for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to hit the jackpot. Of course, regular banks showed little interest in lending him such a large amount, but he found one financier who didn’t ask any questions. All the investor needed to do is take out a life insurance policy costing him € 13,000, including some administration costs.

The man was told to pay the money in cash to one of the offices of Moneygram, an international money transfer service. He sent the money to an anonymous number. Somewhere on the planet, the recipient collected the money. The identity of this person remains unknown to the investor. And his money is untraceable.

Last year, 85 Dutch people reported to Fraud Help Desk that they had been duped by similar loan scams. Fortunately, they lost considerably less money: collectively, they were fleeced out of 175,000 euros, an average of two thousand euros per victim. All these cases involved ‘fees’ or ‘charges’ which needed to be paid in advance before the ‘loan’ could be issued.

Our advice: better safe than sorry, so if you need a loan, make sure to go to a trusted bank.