Instant online loan scams are on the rise in India, here’s how to stay safe from such scams

Online loan fraud via multiple apps is growing on a large scale in the country. According to a new report from India Time, over 180 complaints of loan fraud have been registered in Ghaziabad since December 25, 2021. Also read – Do you use Mamaearth products? Scammers try to steal your money with this trick

Police said these apps lure smartphone users with quick loan options without any paperwork or documentation. Also read – Gmail tips and tricks: How to spot and report email scams

How do instant loan scams work?

Scammers use amateur smartphone users very smartly and deceive them. During the process, users are first prompted to install a certain app and once done, those apps get access to phone contacts, gallery and all other sensitive information.

Several victims complained that even after repaying the loan, scammers/bad actors threatened and humiliated them in front of their friends and family for committing cargo fraud.

According to the report, there have been cases where people have received false legal notices for defaulting on loans.

According to a recent estimate by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), there are over 1100 online lending apps available in India, including 600 illegal Android apps, spread across over 80 app stores.

To prevent such scams, the RBI has recently proposed legislation making verification of such digital lending apps mandatory.

How to stay safe from such scams

If you’ve been one of the victims of this digital loan fraud, here are some ways to protect yourself:

1 – Do not install unverified applications on your smartphone. This is all the more important for Android users as the Apple App Store is slightly more secure.

2 – Do not trust callers who promise easy loans. In most cases, people who promise easy access to money are faking it.

3 – Install apps like Truecaller that show if a call is from a scammer.

4 – For instant loans, always rely on popular/verified apps like PaySense, Dhani, among others.