FTC warns small businesses against loan scams
The United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has warned small business owners who are still in need of financial assistance due to the setbacks of the coronavirus pandemic to be wary of email loan scams which appear to come from the Small Business Office of Disaster Assistance, reports WPXI.
Email scams claim businesses are eligible for a loan of up to $ 25,000 and ask business owners for personal information, such as their date of birth and social security number. According to the FTC, government entities will not send emails or calls to homeowners to offer a loan or request personal information.
Many small businesses suffering from the effects of the coronavirus pandemic are in desperate need of financial assistance, with some receiving loans from the Small Business Administration (SBA) Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) when they were put. available for the first time in spring. However, many were unable to get PPP loans the first time and resorted to other loans. Fortunately, the PPP loan program reopened earlier this month.
Any business owner who suspects they’ve responded to a scam email should check their credit report to make sure no one has taken out a loan in their name. The FTC offers other caveats for small business owners:
- Do not click on unsolicited links in emails received regarding loan applications
- Consult with lenders before sharing personal information
- Apply for loans directly through the PPP; deadline is March 31st or when money is depleted
- Always start with the official ASB website or contact a participating financial institution directly.