Is applying for a payday loan online safe?
Answer: Any time you give out your sensitive personal and financial information on the internet there are risks. If you apply for payday loans online, you could be increasing that risk several times over.
That’s because many websites that advertise payday loans are not lenders. They are businesses known as “lead generators,” which make money primarily by finding customers for lenders.
Lead generators will collect your information – including your Social Security and checking account numbers – and then send your request for a payday loan to a network of lenders. Your application will then be sold to the lender that offers to make you a loan. However, that may not stop other lenders or other service providers from calling or emailing you.
Lead generators might not find you the lowest cost loans, and you should be cautious of sites that promise they will. Many consumers can also be confused about who actually made the loan, which makes getting help when you need it harder.
Key phrases can help you spot a lead generator. It can be hard to tell if the website you click on is a lead generator or an actual lender. Lead generators might disclose that they are not lenders somewhere on their site, but this information can be hard to find. In addition, look for phrases like: “matching you with lenders,” “connecting you with a network of participating lenders,” or something similar, as an indication that you are on a lead generator’s site.