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New crop of Internet crimes prey on those struggling financially

South Carolina residents who frequent the Internet should especially careful when taking advantage of the various services offered, particularly payday loans. A recent case of Internet fraud left an out-of-state man out $420 - and he still didn't get the $2,500 loan he was promised.

When a person is in need of emergency cash, he or she shouldn't have to pay any upfront fees. This should have been a red flag to the man, who paid $420 upfront - in what was being touted as transfer fees - in order to receive the loan.

The alleged scammers were representing an advertising company, not a lender. The man received an email stating that he was approved. The scammers then staged a phone call from the bank stating that the funds could not be received until the transfer fees were paid.

The man purchased two Green Dot cards to cover the two fees-- the first for $280 and the second for $140 to pay for another problem with the "lenders." The man never received his money. In addition, his email correspondence with the scammers was suddenly deleted.

Internet crimes are unfortunate situations. In this case, the man was not the only victim. The bank and the advertising agency that the alleged scammers posed as were also victims in this crime. If the scammers are caught, they could be forced to pay restitution to the man. In extreme cases, prison time is also imposed. South Carolina residents charged with Internet crimes should take the charges seriously and focus on creating a solid defense with the help of an experienced computer crimes attorney. .

Source: NBC 12, "12 ON YOUR SIDE: Man loses money in online loan scam," Diane Walker, May 30, 2013

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