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Non-major warns brokers over ‘sophisticated’ loan fraud

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Annie Kane 3 minute read

The leasing arm of a non-major lender has sent brokers an update on how to identify loan fraud given that it is becoming “increasingly sophisticated”.

Macquarie Leasing, the vehicle finance arm of the Macquarie Group, has issued an update to asset finance brokers and introducers regarding how to “look out” for fraud. 

In the update, the company outlines that fraud is becoming “increasingly sophisticated”, adding that it was therefore important for brokers and introducers to understand what loan fraud comprises and how to identify it. 

“Loan fraud covers a wide range of scenarios, including the improper amendment and falsification of financial documents, obtaining funds under false pretences and identity theft,” the update reads. 

While Macquarie Leasing outlined that its “Commercial Express” policy was designed to deliver a low-document option for applicable eligible commercial clients and was “committed to providing an express policy for non-property owners”, it added that it was the responsibility of brokers and introducers “to ensure that all information entered in MacLease and on vehicle invoices is factual”. 

“We have zero tolerance for information falsification. Anyone found doing this will have their accreditation removed and be subject to financial loss,” it warned. 

As such, the group has provided some suggestions of “tell-tale signs” to look out for. 

According to Macquarie Leasing, these include: spelling and grammatical mistakes and “mismatched fonts and calculation errors on documents”, as well as discrepancies on bank statements (“Cross-check your clients’ bank statements to ensure their debt repayments and liabilities are accounted for,” it suggested). 

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The banking group added: “Pay particular attention to clients who push for a quick settlement, are hesitant to meet in person and only communicate through intermediaries. 

“Importantly, trust your instincts.” 

The group added that any concerns or queries should be escalated to a sales manager, who will look into any potential fraud. 

“No matter how small, we treat all document manipulation very seriously,” the update reads. 

“We will investigate all suspicious documents and may impose disciplinary action (up to and including loss of accreditation) on anyone who participates in this practice.”

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To help brokers and introducers “reduce the risk of [their] business being associated with activities that could be deemed fraudulent,” Macquarie recommended the following steps be taken:

  • Never change or manipulate any documents, “no matter how small or innocent the change may seem”
  • Always keep records of client conversations and written communications (as copies may be requested during an investigation of suspicious documentation)
  • Source all supplier tax invoices directly from suppliers and ensure any changes to a supplier tax invoice are only be made by the issuing supplier
  • Ensure all loan contract pages are properly executed by your client and that any contracts that require re-signing are only done so by the client
  • Original documents must be sighted when certifying identification documents

[Related: Westpac refutes remuneration drove car loan misconduct]

Non-major warns brokers over ‘sophisticated’ loan fraud
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Annie Kane

Annie Kane

Annie Kane is the editor of The Adviser and Mortgage Business.

As well as writing about the Australian broking industry, the mortgage market, financial regulation, fintechs and the wider lending landscape – Annie is also the host of the Elite Broker and In Focus podcasts and The Adviser Live webcasts. 

Email Annie at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

 

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