Finance 101

All About Online Loans and Are They Safe

July 31, 2023

Online loans have become commonplace. But are online loans legit? What online loans are safe? Or can online loans be trusted at all?

Perhaps the single biggest factor when considering an online personal loan is finding a safe, legitimate, trusted lender before giving them your personal information. But how can you find safe online loans?

In this article, we’ll answer these questions as we look at the pros and risks of online loans plus exactly how to get a safe online loan.

What are the pros of online loans?

Is getting a loan online safe? Finding safe loans online can mean doing a little extra research, but it may be worth it. There can be great benefits to online loans, including:

  • Convenience. You’re able to get a loan from anywhere with internet access. There’s no need to make an appointment or take off work for a meeting during business hours.
  • Access at any time. If you work non-standard hours, long hours, or a night shift, meeting with a bank’s loan officer during business hours may not be the easiest task. Getting an online loan frees you from these restrictions and gives you easier access to funds.
  • No personal interaction needed. Those with disabilities or health issues may not be able to get to a bank. Online lending provides options for these customers as well as those not as comfortable with personal interactions, like some individuals with autism or PTSD.
  • Pre-approvals. If you’re looking for a personal loan, it’s much faster and easier to get multiple pre-approvals online.
  • Easier comparison. You can compare loans from the peace of your home, eliminating the pressure you may feel at a bank to decide instantly. That allows you to do your research on your own time and carefully compare lenders and terms before you select a loan option.
  • Quick access. Online applications are almost always quick and easy. With a lender like Check `n Go you can have access to cash as quickly as the next business day.
  • Credit-friendly options. Because the internet gives you access to a larger pool of lenders, you should be able to find loans for a wide variety of credit scores. You aren’t restricted by your lender’s physical location or your own.
  • Better offers. Online lenders don’t have the overhead that exists with a bank‘s physical locations. Some lenders may pass that savings on to you in the form of better rates or terms.

While these benefits are substantial, any time you’re considering an online lender you need to carefully evaluate them to be sure they’re trustworthy. History can help you establish legitimacy for a lender. For example, Check `n Go has been helping customers with challenging credit for more than 20 years and has a great TrustPilot rating with more than 6,000 reviews.

Be sure you know your lender’s history before selecting a loan and choose someone you can trust.

Apply For an Installment Loan

What are the risks of online loans?

There can be significant risks with online loans if you don’t carefully evaluate your lender. So are online personal loans safe? Let’s talk about what to look out for.

  • Scammers. (FTC). You should never have to pay money to get a loan. If a lender asks for an application fee or advance, don’t borrow from them or give them your personal information. Even lenders friendly to low-credit borrowers, like Check `n Go or Allied Cash Advance, must check your score before lending. Check a lender’s website URL and any links; be sure these correspond to the business name and aren’t a random set of letters and numbers. Finally, never accept a loan from a company that calls you without warning or any prior communication – this is a sure sign of a scam.
  • Pressure tactics. Never let a lender pressure you. If you’ve already told a lender no and they continue to contact you, block them or report them to the FTC.
  • Data or identity theft. In general, be careful how much information a potential lender asks for and when they ask for it.
  • Trust failure. Borrowing money from an untrusted lender means you could have constant worries about the security of your data, scamming, and other issues like poor communication from your lender. When life is stressful anyway, this just isn’t worth it.

    If you offset these risks with careful research, online lending can offer a great experience.

How to Get a Safe Online Loan


Researching potential lenders thoroughly is the best way to guarantee your online lender is legit. Evaluate lenders based on these qualities, for a start:


  • Trustworthiness. Be sure the lender is registered in your state with the Federal Trade Commission. The Consumer Federal Protection Bureau provides a list of state banking regulators; you can call your state’s regulator to validate a lender before you borrow.
  • Good communication. Make sure a potential lender is communicating reliably and appropriately with you. Also, do an online search and be certain the lender has a website or app that’s professional and easy to use. It should offer you easy access to humans if you need help, like a live chat or phone number.
  • Reliability. Check for good ratings. You can ask family and friends if they’ve had a good experience with an online lender you could use. Be sure the lender is registered with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and has a good rating. Check other rating systems like TrustPilot, and read other borrowers’ comments to see if there are repeat issues with a lender.  Remember, any lender can have an unhappy customer, but many complaints about the same problems should be a red flag.
  • Data safety. Look for two-factor authentication, where a lender requires both a password and a second verification, like a code sent to you via email or text. Also, check the URL and be sure it begins with “https.” The “S” denotes a secure site where your information is being encrypted or concealed.

Once you’ve selected two or three quality online lenders, you can ask for preapproval to compare offers An installment loan calculator may help you calculate the costs across offers. This only requires a “soft” credit check, which has a limited effect on your credit. Then you can compare each lender’s detailed offer and complete an application with the lender that best fits your needs.

Your completed application will create a “hard” credit check on your credit report, which can temporarily affect your credit negatively. Because of this it’s best to only complete an application for the one lender you’ve selected.

Check `n Go offers legitimate and safe online loans.

When it comes to online loans and trust is important, we hope you’ll consider Check `n Go. We’ve been in business for more than 20 years. We use multi-factor authentication to keep your data secure and encrypted. We have an excellent rating with TrustPilot and have helped many borrowers with challenging credit.

When life happens, we’re here to help - from online emergency loans to check cashing and beyond.  Find out what lending options Check `n Go offers in your state.

Apply For an Installment Loan

FAQs: Are Online Loans Legit?

What is the difference between an online loan and a bank loan?

An online loan and a bank loan are basically the same – a personal installment loan. With a bank, you can visit a physical location. Some banks offer online loans, but not all online lenders have physical bank locations.

Are online loan applications safe?

Online loan applications can be safe if you vet lenders carefully. Check out the guidelines above for more details on how to do this.

What to consider before taking an online loan?

Before taking an online loan, consider how comfortable you are with computers and whether you have consistent access to the internet. If you do, online lending may be a good fit provided you carefully evaluate possible lenders following the guidelines above. Do you want to be able to go to a physical location and talk to someone? If so, online lending won’t be the best option for you.

Editorial Policy: The information contained in Check `n Go’s Finance Academy Learning Center is for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. You should consult your own attorney or seek specific advice from a legal professional regarding any legal issues. Check `n Go does not act as a credit counseling, repair service, or debt consolidation service in providing this content. Please understand that Check `n Go policies change over time. Blog posts reflect Check `n Go policy at the time of writing. While maintained for your information, archived posts may not reflect current Check `n Go policy.

The information contained in our blog posts are the author’s own opinions, not those of Check `n Go or any other company. Any pros and cons are developed by our editorial team based on independent research. Some of the products, services, and offers on this page may not be available from Check `n Go. In Texas only: Check `n Go does not act as a credit services organization in providing this content.