Fighting Back Against Financial Fraud: PPI Claims and Other Examples
For people outside of the European Union, PPI may be an unfamiliar idea. But understanding it is a good way to learn about modern financial fraud, as it pertains to the average consumer.
PPI stands for “Payment Protection Insurance”. People who have sought ppi claims did so because of strange behavior found in their bank accounts. The culprit was insurance agencies automatically drafting payments for insurance that the people in question did not know they were paying for.
These individuals reported PPI claiming that they were signed up for the service without their knowledge or consent. Upon closer inspection, the authorities discovered that these insurance policies initiated when these individuals signed up for large loans, like mortgages and auto loans.
At first, the people who claimed PPI seemed like they had just made a mistake. But as more plaintiffs came forward, the world started to understand that there was a major financial scandal in the works.
Banks colluding with insurers had hidden PPI insurance agreements deep within the voluminous pages of mortgage and other lending documents. People who signed up for these loans simply signed pages when asked. Anyone who has filled out such documentation knows that hundreds of pages are involved. You can’t read everything…
PPI as a Cautionary Tale for Other Fraud
The PPI scandal has been largely contained. Major reparations are being made through a variety of class action and individual lawsuits. But problems like PPI still occur. Those who have PPI claiming fraud are still in danger of other kinds of fraud. It’s impossible to keep up with every new instance of financial fraud, but it is possible to protect yourself.
- Use Credit Cards, Not Debit Cards. It’s easy to get money back if you use a credit card, but not so easy if you use a debit card. If you use your card numbers for payments or to set up auto drafts, use credit cards whenever possible.
- Get Fraud Protection. Fraud and Identity Theft Protection is available from private companies, and sometimes as a free service from banks (especially ones that have had data leaks in recent months). Help from a good company like this can catch fraudsters in the act and protect your money and identity.
- Change Passwords Regularly, and Use 2-Stage Identification. Change passwords frequently, especially to your email account. Any account that contains delicate personal information like SSN or banking numbers must be protected, with 2-stage identification whenever possible.
- Read the Fine Print. When signing agreements, you can avoid the hassle of a PPI claim by reading what you are agreeing to. If you don’t have time or can’t understand the jargon, have a lawyer read over it.
In the end, it may be impossible to completely protect oneself from fraud. But with vigilance and a close eye for any strange occurrences in personal or financial systems, it’s often possible to catch the issue before a great deal of damage is done.