Common Internet Frauds in Import Export Business Part III - Loan for Business Scam

Change is life - everything around us changes with time. Export marketing through Internet was un-imaginable even few years back - today we find the medium so useful. A few years down the line - overseas marketing without Internet will be un-imaginable.

Fraudsters understand this fact and change like chameleon with time. They find a golden opportunity in Internet to defraud across the globe. Cheap access and free e-mail has made globalization of their con game so easy !

During late 1990s - we saw fraudsters taking to Internet in various shades and flavours. Some of these tricks are just on-line replica of age old con games while others more ingenious.

We document here more examples of on-line frauds and abuses

Loan Scams

How do you feel to be offered an extremely lucrative un-secured loan for your business ? Specially, if the offer comes from an unknown but respectable sounding overseas bank or financial institution. Even better - the loan comes to your lap without scrutiny of your financial status or any such pre-condition

Before you say 'Celebration' - please check the offer carefully, specially the fine print.

In all probability - you will have to pay an advance fee to become eligible for the loan. The rider comes in many shades and flavours - registration fee, attorney's fee, processing fee, application fee, first month's payment etc. etc.

And of course - after paying the fee you find the lender has vanished. This is an age-old scam - now circulating through Internet.

Talk to your own bank about a loan before considering other sources. You're more likely to get help from a financial institution that you already have a relationship with than from someone who doesn't know you or your business.

Don't believe advertisements promising loans regardless of past credit problems. If you have bad credit, it's unlikely that any legitimate bank or other financial institution will give you a loan.

Be especially wary of unsolicited calls, e-mails or letters offering you a loan. You could be the target of someone who wants to take your money, not lend it.

Once you fall for a loan scam, the crook may try to get even more money by telling you to send another payment to a second company to complete the loan process.

Before you sign on the dotted line, get all loan terms in writing, including the payment schedule and interest rate. If the lender isn't familiar to you, check its background - consult your banker.

Remember - legitimate lenders do not need advance fee for sanctioning loan. They are likely to be more concerned with your repayment capability than collecting a small advance fee.

Happy and Safe Surfing

Dr. Amit K Chatterjee

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Source: FAIDA - Newsletter on Business Opportunties from India and Abroad Vol: 4, Issue 18 ; Jan 1' 2004

Author : Dr. Amit K. Chatterjee
(Amit worked in blue-chip Indian and MNCs for 15 years in various capacities like Research and Information Analysis, Market Development, MIS, R&D Information Systems etc. before starting his e-commerce venture in 1997. The views expressed in this columns are of his own. He may be reached at )

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