PEKAN NANAS: A clerk who fell prey to a loan scam syndicate lost RM13,690 within a month. Speaking to the media at the DAP community centre here, the woman who only wanted to be known as Lee said she learnt from a friend that she could apply for a personal loan from a website called Ringgit Plus.Com. Upon registering on the website on Nov 14, a man claiming to be a credit company employee phoned her to inform that his company could provide a loan of RM30,000 without any collaboration. He asked her to bank in RM450 as processing fee and Lee transferred the sum on Nov 18. Later, he asked her to bank in RM1,440 for insurance fees as well as a deposit of RM3,000. The man later said the loan will be increased to RM36,000 if she would top up another RM3,000. Lee banked in the money as the man said if she failed to do so, all previous payments would be confiscated by Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM). On Nov 30, the man said she needed to bank in another RM4,000, so the loan could be increased to RM40,000. "I felt something amiss and after paying the RM4,000, I sought help from Pekan Nanas state assemblyman Yeo Tung Siong," Lee said. Lee said she had paid a total of RM13,690 within a month, but did not receive anything from the credit company. She initially wanted to obtain a loan of RM30,000 for her house renovation but ended up losing money instead. Yeo said illegal money lending services are promoted through websites, social media, telephone calls, SMS, emails and other forms of communication. "It is better to personally go to the financial institution for a loan," he said. He also advised the public to refer to the list of institutions licensed or approved under the laws administered by the central bank by visiting http://www.bnm.gov.my before entering into any money transactions or call BNM telelink (Customer Contact Centre) at 1300-88-5465.