TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA)- Two Bay area women say someone used their personal information to apply for loans that are supposed to help small business struggling amid the pandemic.
Congress set aside billions for SBA loans, and crooks are trying to get their hands on the money.
Earlier this month, Cynthia Lommel, turned to Better Call Behnken after finding out the SBA approved a $150,000 loan in her name. The 70-year-old woman is retired and never owned a business.
Lisa Chidester, of Manatee County, was watching our story and said she was able to stop an SBA loan from coming through in her name. That’s because she saw a credit inquiry from the SBA on her credit report.
She was able to call the SBA and dispute the loan. She also received a copy of the loan application and was stunned to see all of the fake information the crook made up.
“The only thing real was my name, address and social security number,” she said.
The crook said she was in construction and the owner of a heating and air conditioning business.
“We have to ask ourselves, ‘how are the crooks getting fast-laned into the money, and other people are not?” she said. “I hope somebody can get to the bottom of this.”
Coronavirus relief fraud is rampant, a congressional investigation earlier this month found more than $1 billion that was supposed to help small businesses ended up in the wrong hands.