I’ve been asked to send (or lend) money
From time to time, we all need a helping hand - but, you should always be cautious when being asked to send or temporarily ‘lend’ money, to anyone, ensuring you’re comfortable with the situation.
Under no circumstances should you send or temporarily ‘lend’ money to someone you’ve not met in person, for example, someone that you’ve met online - no matter how long you’ve been in contact.
There are several ways unscrupulous individuals may try to deceive you via this method, for their own financial gain. Here are just a few examples:
Romance scam: Fraudsters may try to contact you (or someone you know) through social media or dating websites/apps, using false profiles - in order to establish a relationship, allowing them to rely or prey on an emotional attachment.
This is commonly driven by the intention to request money - plausibly by requesting funds for travel/accommodation, or asking for financial assistance to help a family member.
Always be wary of approaches from strangers online, especially those with a limited profile, supplying contradictory information or that have very few photographs, which could have been taken from another person's profile.
You might also be asked to pay a fee in advance of receiving goods or a service.
Advance fee fraud: A fraudster may request that you send money in order to release a larger sum of money. For example, this could be for a distant relative’s inheritance, a loan or a lottery win - always be wary of such approaches. Alternatively, another form of advance fee fraud could be someone who requests you make a payment for goods or services in advance, for example paying a property rental deposit or a deposit on a car.
Alternatively, a loan company might request you make a payment in advance of receiving the loan - this could be for an ’insurance payment’ or ’legal costs’. Most lenders won’t charge an up front fee so be wary of these requests - always check the company you are dealing with is FCA regulated by checking the FCA register.
Remember - if it sounds too good to be true, it usually is.
Read our blog post on avoiding financial fraud, including romance scams.