Isabelle Lord | Desjardins
Let's face it: a postsecondary education can get expensive, and the government's loans and bursaries program often falls short of expectations. So it's not surprising that students with shallower pockets might find themselves tempted by financing offers that seem too good to be true. Social media is brimming with promotions for phony loans that aren't actually designed to top up a student's bank account--the goal is to empty it.
To lure you in, fake lenders will:
- provide you with paperwork that looks genuine, with a contract and everything
- use convincing legal language
- promise you a competitive interest rate
- not require a credit check
Pay up front?
Scammers ask you to pay new account or loan insurance fees before you receive any financing. Some of them even have the audacity to ask you for a few monthly payments up front to "boost your credit score."
The first payment they ask you for is often a small one, and then the fees start piling up. Although you continue making payments, you never end up getting the funds you were counting on. To add insult to injury, now that they've already collected your personal and banking information, they can steal your identity and start causing you even bigger problems.
Sharpen your instincts
When you see an offer on social media, you might think it's totally legit. It doesn't matter if your friends share it on Facebook--any loan offer that requires you to pay before delivering funds should raise a giant red flag.
Help for all Desjardins individual members, at no extra cost
Identity Theft Assistance is available at no extra cost to Desjardins individual members. It gives access to identity theft lawyers, reliable information on identity theft and ways to prevent it, and personalized, step-by-step assistance from our lawyers to recover identity in the event member's personal information is used fraudulently or stolen.
Have a great semester!