News Story
Posted by Transylvania County on April 1, 2019

If you have a smart phone, perhaps you are like us; you’re getting an array of phone calls from all over the United States and North America from Telemarketing con artists. They are creative, coming up with new tricks every day to scam unsuspecting Transylvania residents. The callers prey on anyone who answers a phone, but especially seniors and others who have responded to phony sweepstakes or other scams before.

 

We will continue to spend the next few weeks on examples of scams we know have been successful for fraudulent telemarketers give you an idea of the tricks they play.

 

7.  ADVANCE FEE LOAN SCAMS

 

You call the toll-free number from a classified ad in a local newspaper or shopping guide that guarantees a loan or credit card to people with no credit, poor credit, prior bankruptcies or inadequate incomes. The person who answers your call confirms that you will receive the loan or credit card, after you pay a fee. The fee is said to cover processing, credit insurance, a security deposit or the first and last month’s payments.

 

Scammers who are based in Canada often pressure you to wire the fee to them. Other scammers, usually based in Florida or California, ask for your checking account number so they can draft the account for the fee. The Canadian scammers send nothing after receiving your money, while the U.S.-based scammers may send you lists of banks that offer credit cards. Sometimes they send catalogs of over-priced merchandise and a plastic card, which is good only for charging part of the price of items listed in the catalog. Typical losses from advanced fee scams range from $199 to $2,000.

 

North Carolina ranks high in the number of victims of this scam. Frequent targets are enlisted military personnel and blue collar workers. In some instances, the scammers call the consumers directly after purchasing their credit information from banks which have turned them down for loans or credit cards.

 

Telemarketers are also purchasing the names and numbers of consumers with poor credit. They call and say that for a few hundred dollars, they can fix your credit by removing negative items on your credit report regardless of whether they are accurate. However, accurate items on credit reports cannot be removed and consumers can get truly erroneous information removed from a credit report at no cost.

 

The North Carolina Department of Justice can help; call toll free at 1-877-5-NO-SCAM

Source: NC Department of Justice