Consumers in West Virginia are being warned, by their Attorney General Darrell McGraw, about a scam that offers the promise of “fast and easy loans”. These promises are coming from advertisements produced by the “Royalty Resource Network” (RRN), a Canadian based scam operation, that is appearing in local West Virginia publications.
Attorney General McGraw stated: “Consumers should use extra caution when responding to any sort of advertisement regarding lending and finance. Thieves will use newspapers, websites, e-mails, telephone calls – any medium at their disposal – to help you part with your hard-earned money. No legitimate company or organization will require you to wire money in advance using a wire transfer service in order to qualify for a loan, grant or any other financial aid.”
RNN’s advertisements claim you can obtain a loan ranging from $2,500.00 up to $1 million, with no consulting, application or processing fees. Too good to be true? What actually happens is, the consumer sends an advance portion of the money they intend to borrow through a reputable wire service where a fake RNN loan offers collects the money and disappears.
Many scans of this type surface frequently on the internet. It appears that this particular instance the company in question is using smaller newspapers and publications to reach consumers. In this instance a large ad was ordered and placed in The Ad Bulletin. Not only were consumers scammed, The Ad Bulletin was too. RRN’s scammers used a stolen credit card to pay for the advertisement.
Scammers are able to quickly open and close a scam in a matter of days, by using disposable cell phones, free e-mail accounts and remotely routed toll-free numbers. In this case if you call the toll-free number given by RRN it rings as a fast busy signal. Other companies related to this scam are the Vintage Consumer Network and Forum Family Services. The names were possibly choose for their friendly connotations.
Attorney General McGraw’s Consumer Protection Division has referred the complaints against these three companies as well as other across-the-border advance-fee loan scams, to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre. The Centre is a joint task force of the Ontario Provincial Police, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the Competition Bureau Canada.
These advance fee loan scams unfortunately attract a number of people who are desperate to get loans and sadly pay money, never to see it again.