New Scam Tells Victims They Owe Money To Payday Loan Companies - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

New Scam Tells Victims They Owe Money To Payday Loan Companies

KIROTV.COM - A new telephone collection scam is causing problems for at least one Western Washington victim. "We're throwing you under the bus; we are coming to arrest you for Christmas," is what Iris Williams of Monroe was told during a December 22 phone call, she said.

"I started thinking, 'No, no, I haven't done anything,'" Williams said. Whomever was on the other end wanted $300. They said they were from the Criminal Investigation Bureau.

The person knew Williams' bank account numbers, a partial social security number and her address.

"You can tell it was an intimidation thing," Williams said. "I didn't back down."What's worse is that these kinds of scammers are nearly impossible to catch. They often call from overseas using one phone number; then they'll call again from a different number, using a different name.

Williams said she received dozens of calls and was even called at work.Federal investigators said the scams amount to extortion and identity theft."This is serious criminal activity," said David Horn with the Federal Trade Commission.

The FTC said it's unclear how scammers obtain people's personal information, but said it usually happens after they've completed an online application for loans or credit cards. "Don't pay them, whatever you do, because it will get worse once they know you're susceptible to those sort of tactics," Horn said.

Despite striking a firm tone when she was called, Williams said that, "I believe they will keep calling; I'm ready. "The FTC said that people who get phone calls like Williams did should report them immediately to the police or FBI.People can also file a formal complaint with the FTC by visiting www.FTCcomplaintassistant.gov.

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