There’s a new lending platform advertising its services on Instagram. LendMeNow is an ATM card phishing scam that should be avoided.
Plenty of online loan apps already operate in Nigeria without regulation. Most of them do give loans and charge extortionate interest. Then they coerce their victims by threatening to defame them to their friends and family.
Loan sharks are bad enough, but at least they still give some money in times of emergency. This particular platform only get their victims to provide their ATM card details so they can wipe their victims bank account.
How the scam works
So you’re scrolling through your Instagram feed, then you see the sponsored ad of this company promising to give you a loan of up to 1 million naira. When you click on the link to apply, you will be asked to provide your details just like other loan apps. Details including your BVN, address and work details. Then you will be asked to provide your ATM card details as a means of repayment.
Note that binding your ATM card to your account is standard practice for most loan apps, but how they do it is they usually ask you to pay a small amount via a third party payment portal like Flutterwave or Paystack.
Flutterwave, Paystack are legit payment processing gateways that can be trusted with your ATM card details. But in the case of Lend me know, they don’t send you to one of these payment processing gateways, they give you a form to input your details on their website. Ones you provide your ATM card details and password, they will use that information to wipe your bank account clean.
Always pay attention to the URL of the page you’re imputing your card details in on the internet because what these scammers do is to design a page similar to that of Flutterwave and even use Flutterwave’s logo on it to trick their victims.
Talking any loan online is already dangerous and you should try as much as possible to avoid it. If you have to, pay attention to details and don’t just put your card details anywhere online to avoid getting cleaned out by scammers.
What should I do if I have already entered my ATM card details in a scam website?
If they have already removed some money from your bank account or you have already provided your card details to such a scam website, all you can do now is to block your card immediately. you can report to your bank immediately or find out how you can block your particular bank card through self help. some banks have atm card blocking feature on their mobile app. Note that changing your password alone might not be enough, you have to block online and POS transactions on the card.
How to detect a fake loan app
- Loan apps asking for KYC information including your BVN and asking you to bind your ATM card to your account is normal, but when an app is asking you to make upfront payments or pay for processing fee, such an app is most likely a scam.
- Always read other customer’s review on play store or read reviews on websites like this before downloading any loan app.
- If an app does not have a contact phone number, or the phone number is not functional, that is a redflag.
- Pay attention to fake reviews on Google play store, most of this apps pay spammers to write reviews for them. Most of the reviews will be from foreign accounts and will mostly give the app a five star without any reasonable comment.
- Don’t part with money for what ever reason before getting your loan.
- there are a lots of loan sharks operating without regulation in Nigeria, know that Playstore does not rigorously verify this apps, it is up to you to do your research before doing business with them.
- When providing your ATM card details as a means of repayment, make sure you are entering your details in a reputable payment gateway like Flutterwave or Paystack. Pay attention to the page URL before entering your card details.