California homeowners are warned to beware of phone solicitations from scam artists claiming to provide assistance related to the recent national mortgage settlement. The Attorney Generals have already received reports of scammers calling borrowers claiming to be one of the major banks involved in this settlement and offering a cash payment to consumers if they simply provide the routing number to access their bank account.
If you receive an unsolicited call from one of the major banks, you can identify a scam in several ways:
- Does the caller identify themselves as representing your loan servicer? Or do they ask you to provide the name of your loan servicer? If they ask you for the name of your servicer, they may be a scammer.
- Does the caller offer to provide your personal information to assist you in identifying your account? Or do they ask you to provide that? If the caller is from your loan servicer, they will be able to tell YOU your personal information because they will have it. You should never provide your personal information (including bank account numbers, social security numbers, etc.) to an unsolicited caller—no matter what they promise you.
- Does the caller offer to speed your settlement relief for a fee? They are definitely a scammer! Neither the banks nor the Attorneys General will charge a fee to speed your settlement.
- If you think the caller may be legitimate, ask for their contact information, tell them you are going to call your bank and confirm, then call them back. Chances are if they’re a scammer, they won’t want you to check on them and they won’t provide their contact information.
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