Electronic moneylenders: ATM-like cash machines that lend up to $1,000 with minimal checks ‘target the needy and lure them into a debt trap’
- ATMs that look like ATMs are popping up across Australia
- Machines only need ID and bank details to approve large loans
- But financial experts fear ‘targeting the most vulnerable people’
Cash lending machines that look like ATMs and lend people up to $1,000 have been popping up all over Australia.
The machines only require ID and bank details and approve customers for substantial loans almost instantly, ABC News reported.
But financial experts fear “targeting the most vulnerable people” and putting them into debt.
ATMs that look like cash machines and lend people up to $1,000 have been popping up across Australia (stock)
The machines, operated by the Cash N Go company, have been seen in New South Wales in the Wollongong, Central Coast and Hunter areas.
Loan amounts range from $50 to $1,000, with clients having one to three months to repay the loan with interest.
NSW Financial Counselors Association chairman Graham Smith said he was concerned that socio-economically disadvantaged areas of NSW were being targeted.
He pointed machines at Cessnock in the Hunter area.
“There are two smoking rooms, and in one store there is one, and in another store there are two. Usually there’s a queue at the door around Christmas,’ Mr Smith said.
“Unfortunately, I think these machines are targeting the most vulnerable in our community, people on benefits who are looking for a way to get some quick cash that I don’t think they can afford in the long run.”
But financial experts fear ‘targeting the most vulnerable people’ and putting them into debt (stock)
Second, the controversial machines are legal in Australia and are managed by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission.
They are regulated the same way as other cash advance lenders.
Cash N Go said it lends money to those “who can afford to pay it back”.
“CashnGo Australia is committed to protecting consumers by meeting our obligations to lend responsibly. This means we take responsible loan obligations very seriously and will only approve customers for a loan they can repay,’ the company said in a statement Thursday.