The warning forms part of a hard-hitting nationwide social media campaign by the Illegal Money Lending Team (IMLT) and backed by Nottinghamshire County Council’s trading standards team as the festive season fast approaches.
It comes as research shows that Christmas is the second highest reason people borrow money from loan sharks.
Now the IMLT has launched its annual Christmas campaign which aims to raise awareness of the dangers of using loan sharks and promote the support available to victims and their families.
The #AllIWantForChristmas campaign will run across Stop Loan Sharks' social media channels until Sunday, December 5 and features advice and tips on how to stay safe from illegal money lenders over the festive period.
Coun John Cottee (Con), chairman of the council’s communities committee, said: “There is a tremendous amount of pressure put on people at this time of year to deliver but whatever the costs involved and, however great that pressure is, I would desperately urge residents across Nottinghamshire to avoid using loan sharks.
“Christmas is meant to be the most wonderful time of year and, therefore, I very much welcome the work of the IMLT in launching its annual #AllIWantForChristmas campaign to highlight the dangers of using predatory loan sharks.”
Anyone with concerns about illegal money lending can contact the helpline on 0300 5552222 or click here.