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 Help me help a customer from losing more money.

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skin
Hello I'm New here!


Joined: 09 Aug 2007
Posts: 2


PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 12:06 am Reply with quoteBack to top

I've been watching this site for a while and thought this would be the best place to ask.


I work for a finance company, small loans and such, and a customer has come in recently to apply for an increase on her loan. she believed she going to recieve a large sum of money from some long lost relative. they asked her to send a western union money transfer (surprise surprise) to cover courier costs so she can recieve her cheque.

the thing is she's already sent $150 to them to cover the courier costs! she's provided us with print outs of the email from the "relative" and from her barrister...

now my question is, how do i go about telling this woman she's been scammed? i don't want to embaress her but at the same time i don't want her to risk losing more money.

has anyone had to deal with this kind of situation before?
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ratter
Master of Master Baiters


Joined: 03 Jun 2007
Posts: 630
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 12:10 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Skin, sadly this comes up all too often. If you can, get her to go to www.scamwarners.com where she can read about scams and post any questions. You of course can do the same on her behalf.

The advice is to drop all contact with these people. If the WU transfer is very recent, call NOW to cancel it but chances are the money is gone.

As you probably have seen here, one payment is just the beginning. There will be fees for necessary documents, for services, for bribes...as long as she keeps paying, they will find reasons to ask for more.

Be aware that there are also scammers that prey on victims with "recovery" pitches...for a fee they will get the money back.

The best way to tell her is one-on-one and in as straightforward but understanding a way as possible. Assure her that all manner of people have fallen for these scams and, while she will probably be embarrassed, she is by no means alone.

As a professional in the financial world, you have the authority of your position to assist in convincing her that you know what you are talking about. It will be easier for you to convince her that it would be for a friend or relative to do so.

Good luck, please let us know how it progresses, and ask here or at scamwarners if you need further advice.

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Josh
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Joined: 24 Apr 2007
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 12:44 am Reply with quoteBack to top

And a big Thumbs up to you for not just upping her loan. It's great to know that all finance companies don't sell debt no matter what.

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skin
Hello I'm New here!


Joined: 09 Aug 2007
Posts: 2


PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 12:47 am Reply with quoteBack to top

haha, believe me, i'm still getting term terms with the fact that i'm getting paid from peoples bad debts! that makes me feel bad enough let alone actually putting someone in debt...

as for getting in contact with her thats a little more difficult. but hopefully i'll be here when she drops by the office.
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princess
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Joined: 03 Aug 2007
Posts: 8


PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 1:00 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Hello Skin,

I am a branch manager at a bank locally and have had similar situations in the past. Before knowing about this and other sites, I have always used the FBI site located here:
http://www.fbi.gov/majcases/fraud/fraudschemes.htm

Depending on the relationship you have with your client, he or she may be able to listen to you. I'm never afraid to tell people that they are being victimized. I would rather be the bearer of bad news while they still have money than keep my mouth closed and let them maintain their dignity for a little while.

That being said, there are some people who will not listen to you no matter how hard you try. You definitely owe it to your customer to help them out. Another avenue is to contact your institution's fraud prevention/security department. If they are taking out a loan or increasing a line of credit for this, it puts the bank/institution at risk as well. They may be able to step in and assist you with this.

Good luck!

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Jayhawk
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Joined: 07 Jul 2006
Posts: 5142


PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 1:23 am Reply with quoteBack to top

I echo the big Thumbs up to both skin and princess. It's nice to see folks trying to help others from being scammed.

The only thing that I would add is to tell them that it is 100% certain that they are being scammed. No ifs, ands or butts. Direct them to the websites, or even print out the material and show it to them, but make it clear that you don't just believe this to be a scam, you are absolutely certain it will be a scam. Tell them that if they decide to follow through all they will get is requests for more money. There is no pot at the end of the rainbow.

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FourFlusher
Master Baiter


Joined: 04 Aug 2007
Posts: 103


PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 1:30 am Reply with quoteBack to top

I'd rather be embarrassed than bled dry.

Get a copy of her original letter, then show her dozens like it here.
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Obi-Wan Knievel
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Joined: 10 Dec 2006
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 3:49 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Dang FourFlusher, you beat me to it!

But that's the easiest thing. Tell her to stop by here.

If she really needs convincing, tell her to open another free e-mail account under a different name and send him a new "just got your mail" reply just to see what happens. That way, her new "friend" will convince her of what any number of websites and warnings may not. That's exactly what a co-worker told me to do when I "won the lottery" in 1998 and didn't really want to hear the truth! (No, I've never worked with Shiver. This was obviously one of his students though.)

Yes I know the web has existed since 1995. I just really never got a scam letter until 1998. Told you I was a newb!
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Ima Baeder
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Joined: 03 May 2007
Posts: 18314


PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 3:53 am Reply with quoteBack to top

You can also tell her to google the scammer's name, or specific bits of his intro emails. That will lead her to anti-scam sites and most likely, exact duplicates of the original letter she received.

Good for you, Skin! Very Happy

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