Don't get burned by fake payday loan sites

The bills need to be paid and you don't have enough money. That Internet ad for an online pay day lender is mighty tempting: a "guaranteed" loan without a credit check.

You can get the loan, they say, but first you have send them money to pay some sort of fee.

Better watch out. That's the sure sign of a scam.

"Unfortunately, the loan never appears and the consumer is left holding the bag," says John Breyault, director of National Consumers Leagues Fraud Center.

Breyault says scammers have created bogus payday loan sites that look completely legitimate. Some even have fake video testimonials to instill confidence.

Victims have lost hundreds, sometimes thousands of dollars. And if you get burned, you'll never get your money back.

Breyault has this advice.

"If you're asked to pay money before you get the loan, then it's always a scam."

You don't wire money; you don't send prepaid debit card.

And consider this: to apply for an online payday loan, you need to supply personal information, such as your bank account and Social Security number. Do that, and you could be setting yourself up for identity theft.

For more information

National Consumers League Alert: Beware of Online Payday Loan Offers
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