ALBANY — If it looks too good to be true or if you’re asked to pay up front to people you’ve never even heard of, you might consider running like the wind. It’s likely someone wants to take you for a ride.
According to the Better Business Bureau of Columbus, a fraudulent loan company calling itself Bloomberg Financial Securities Ltd. has been offering loans through its website, www.bloombergfinancialsecurity.com.
Claiming to have been established in San Antonio in 1988, the site offers personal, auto and debt-consolidation loans. The only hitch is that consumers are required to provide an advance fee of $300 to $500 to acquire loans that are never processed. As part of the site’s attempt to appear legitimate, the BBB logo is illegally displayed.
Although the scam company website has seemingly been removed, at least temporarily, Joann Rivas, business relations executive with the Columbus BBB, cautions that complaints against the company dating back several months have shown up on Web searches.
The bogus loan company listed its address as 408 North Jackson St. in Albany, Rivas said. That address is actually a local law office.
One of the telephone numbers listed on the website was also that of the law office. A business license check with the city of Albany showed that no such loan company existed, Rivas said.
Rivas speculates the scam-oriented company may have intended to lend credence to its name by confusing it with Bloomberg.com, a legitimate finance-oriented international company.
“If you’re uncertain about a company’s affiliation with the Better Business Bureau, you should always call the BBB for confirmation,” Rivas said. “Another way could be to click the BBB logo on the website in question to see if you’re directed to the company’s directory at the BBB site.”
According to Rivas, the Bloomberg Financial website did nothing at all when clicked.