During the past week, complaints are starting to pile up about a company calling itself Bay Valley Financial. Bay Valley is perpetuating an advanced fee loan scam. They claim to have loans available to consumers and businesses regardless of their credit history. The company has falsely given the address of 6910 Pacific Street, Suite 425 in Omaha, Nebraska, the same address used by another advanced fee loan scammer last May.
Consumers from Texas, Tennessee and Georgia have all reported to BBB that they were searching for personal loans online and found Bay Valley's website, www.bayvalleyservices.com. Bay Valley Financial presents a professional looking website that claims to offer a broad spectrum of lending services, including personal loans at low rates and an application form that unfortunately asks for the applicant's Social Security number.
Once the applications were submitted online, the consumers received phone calls stating that their loans had been approved at an attractive interest rate, and the funds would be deposited in their bank accounts as soon as the first few months' payments were wired by Money Gram to the phony lender in Canada. Two consumers paid $695 for $5,000 loans, and a business owner paid $980 for an $8000 loan. After sending the payments, none of the complainants have received their loans. Victims have reported to BBB that when they call to inquire about the status of their loans, they either can't get through or the scammers hang up on them.
An investigation by BBB reveals that Bay Valley Financial's website remains operative and the phone number, 1-866-403-7350, is answered with a voicemail message that requires callers to enter their party's extension. BBB has also found that the company is not located in Omaha, NE, and the suite number provided by the company is not legitimate.
According to Canadian authorities, most of the current advance-fee loan schemes have their roots in Nigeria and are being funneled through Canada.
BBB President Jim Hegarty stated, "Unfortunately, the current economic climate has created additional vulnerability for Americans struggling to make ends meet. They are often blinded by the convincing promises made by the scammers and do not see the sting coming. No legitimate lender will ever ask you to pay a fee in advance to obtain a loan. If someone does, just say no - and contact BBB at 402-391-7612, 800-649-6814, or at www.bbb.org."
Better Business Bureau, Inc. (BBB) has been serving the region for more than 70 years and is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting trust between consumers and the business community. Accountability, education and recognition are key components to BBB's mission of fostering trust in the marketplace. Today, BBB has a membership of more than 6,900 companies in Nebraska, South Dakota and southwest Iowa. Consumers are encouraged to report complaints and possible scams to BBB. BBB annually honors organizations and companies that demonstrate exceptional business ethics with the prestigious Integrity Award. As a matter of policy, BBB does not endorse any product, service or company. For more information, please visit www.bbb.org.