Washington State Department of Financial Institutions

Consumer Alert:
Cash Advance USA

September 18, 2013

The Washington State Department of Financial Institutions (DFI) received a complaint from a consumer who was the target of an advanced fee scam. The consumer received a loan offer from a man who claimed to be John Anderson of Cash Advance USA. The man told the consumer that she could obtain a loan from Cash Advance USA if she first put $250 on a prepaid card and reported the card number. After the consumer did so, another man, who claimed to be Anthony Miller from Western Union, contacted the consumer. That man requested another $200. Ultimately, $250 was withdrawn from the prepaid card and the consumer did not obtain a loan.

There is no indication that Western Union was in fact involved. The phone numbers associated with this scam are 252-296-1625 and 401-380-6800.

Verify Licenses

DFI strongly recommends that consumers deal only with those lenders that are properly licensed to conduct business. Consumers can determine whether lenders are properly licensed using the "Verify a License" feature on DFI's website at www.dfi.wa.gov/consumers/findcompany.htm.

Report Fraud

Washington State residents, if you are suspicious of unlicensed activity by a lender please contact the Washington State Department of Financial Institutions at 1-877-RING-DFI (746-4334), or online at www.dfi.wa.gov.

If you live in another state, find your state regulator.

If you feel you have been the victim of a loan scam please contact the Federal Trade Commission at 1-877-FTC-HELP (382-4357) or online at www.ftc.gov; or contact the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (855) 411-CFPB or online at www.consumerfinance.gov. Because the scammers have access to bank account information and social security numbers, victims should consider themselves victims of identity theft and take appropriate precautions. The Federal Trade Commission has information for victims of identity theft available online at www.ftc.gov.

If you feel you have been the victim of a loan scam involving the Internet please contact the Internet Crime Complaint Center online at www.ic3.gov.

If you feel you have been the victim of a loan scam and are concerned about your personal financial information, contact your banking institution, and the three major credit bureaus.

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