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While this blog is a mix of lifestyle topics, perhaps it’s best to turn the anti-loan scam tips into something that’s also a parenting post. Write the copy in such a way that it’s about how parents can teach kids to protect themselves versus scammers.
Basic financial skills like saving regularly, budgeting money, spending on needs more than wants, or opening a bank savings account are some important life skills that we should be teaching our children. They will benefit from these skills all their lives.
However, once our kids start making financial transactions online, whether by using an e-shopping app, an e-wallet, or online banking, they can become targets for scammers. As a parent, you have to set a good example for your kids when it comes to outsmarting scammers.
For example, have you heard about loan payment scams? You have to know how to protect yourself and others from such criminal acts. A loan payment scam is essentially this: the scammer promises to help you process a loan faster and more conveniently. In reality, the scammer is just out to steal your money.
First, the scammer convinces you that he or she is a well-connected insider at a bank or other lending company. Once you are convinced and the scammer earns your trust, you are asked to give payments as part of your “loan processing”. Of course, your money goes to the scammer instead of the bank or lender.
Outsmart these loan scammers through the following steps:
Pay for your loans only through proper bank channels. These are a) Over the counter at your bank branch or b) through an automatic debit arrangement with your bank.
These payment channels apply to your car loans, home loans, and business loans. If someone asks you to pay through other channels, be warned: you might be dealing with a loan scammer.
Ask your bank about auto-debit arrangements. Auto debit payments are more secure and convenient. Or inquire at your nearest BDO branch about its Automatic Debit Arrangement (ADA). This transfers money from an assigned BDO Savings or Checking account to your monthly loan payments.
Do proper checking first. When someone offers to process your loan application, check with the bank or lending company first. Verify if the person is their authorized agent. Then verify if the offer is a legitimate one and honored by the bank/lender. Do this whether the person is a stranger, a friend, or a relative.
Be wary of money transfers to personal accounts. If you are instructed to pay for loans (or loan applications) through someone’s personal account, that’s a red flag. You might be dealing with a loan scammer.
To protect your kids, teach them how to outsmart scammers. These scammers will make fake phone calls or send fake emails and messages. Their goal? To trick people into sharing their personal information. Here’s a list of personal information that a scammer would ask for:
- Username and password of your online bank account (or online shopping account, etc.)
- Your One-Time PIN (OTP) for online transactions
- Your name, address, phone number, birthday, mother’s maiden name, or any other similar information; usually, their reason for asking this is to “verify” your account.
- Your credit card or debit card number, expiry date, CVV (or Card Verification Value, which can be found at the back of your card), or OTP.
- Sending you links to click on the email, private message, or text message. Don’t click on these links. They might lead you to pages meant to steal your personal data.
If your child receives a phone call, email, text, or private message asking for any of these pieces of information, be warned: a scammer could be targeting your child. Teach your child to ask for your help in case they receive these suspicious communications.
If you suspect that a scammer is targeting you or your child, screenshot the message as
evidence and report the matter to your bank.