If someone calls you at home or on your cell giving your social security number, date of birth, address, employer information, bank account numbers and names and telephone numbers of relatives and friends, would you think the call has to be legit? Think again.
First, if you are like me, you will be stunned they have all your personal information. Second, stop and analyze what they are saying. Could this be a scam?
The IC3 says they have received a high volume of complaints from victims of payday loan telephone collection scams. The callers pretend to be from federal agencies and law firms vehemently saying they are collecting on a debt. Of course, they won’t go in to detail about the debt.
The alarming question is how did the fraudsters get all your personal information — and how else are they using it in addition to threatening you legally and or physically? Victims have said they had completed online applications for other loans or credit cards before the calls began.
If you should receive such a call, hang up immediately. Then go into your “protect your identity” mode. Contact the following:
- your banking and investment institutions
- the three major credit bureaus and request an alert be put on your file
- your local law enforcement agencies
- the Social Security Administration
- the utility companies
- your creditors
- your insurance agent(s)
- the U.S. Postal Inspector’s office
Finally, file a complaint at www.IC3.gov
Don’t forget to alert your family of what has happened. These con artists have been known to harass family members, too.
Monitor all your mail, especially your bills to make sure they are authentic. Keep a record of dates and names of contacts about this scam and copies of all the related information about disputed bills, etc.
Keep on the alert for several months after the call(s).
Has this ever happened to you?