There has been a spate of scams involving impersonation of licensed moneylender. The use of social media s messages are sent offering loans and loan services to random users. The scammers may claim to be staff from a licensed moneylender. Interested parties are instructed to transfer money as a deposit before the loan can be disbursed.
After making the transfer, victims find that the scammers are no longer contactable. As part of these scams, the scammers may ask for personal information like NRIC and contact numbers, Singpass details and bank account numbers.
When handed over, the information is used to harass or threaten victims for payment.
Members of the public are reminded of the following:
- Licensed moneylenders are not allowed to solicit for loans via text messages, phone calls or Whatsapp.
- Licensed moneylenders are required to meet the borrower in person at the approved place of business to conduct physical face-to-face verification of his identity before granting any loan.
- A loan transaction performed fully online is not allowed. The business address of each licensed moneylender is published on the Ministry of Law’s Registry of Moneylenders website at https://rom.mlaw.gov.sg/information-for-borrowers/list-of-licensed-moneylenders-in-singapore/.
- Licensed moneylenders will not ask a loan applicant to make any payment before the disbursement of a loan, or to secure the disbursement of a loan. This includes GST, “admin fee”, “processing fee”, or any other fee. Any administrative fee that is charged by licensed moneylenders after a loan has been granted will be deducted from the loan principal that is disbursed to the borrower.
- Licensed moneylenders will not require a processing fee or tax payment to be made to any government agency or Moneylenders Credit Bureau before a loan can be disbursed to the borrower.
Do heed warning signs such as:
- Ads that reach you vis social media, sms or messaging apps
- Fictitious business websites that may look legitimate
- Instant, and hassle-free loan approvals
- Moneylenders who requests for fees to be transferred to them before loan application is processed.
Members of the public are advised to take the following precautions with regard to such scams:
- Ignore such advertisements and do not reply to these messages. Instead, block or report the number as spam, WhatsApp or through other third-party applications; and
- Do not provide your personal information such as NRIC, SingPass or bank account details to anyone.