7 On Your Side: Back to school scams targeting college students

Friday, September 01, 2017 06:12PM
Nina Pineda has the details on the back-to-school scams.

NEW YORK - College students beware, waiting to move into your dorm room? Virtual hackers.

Adam Levin, founder of ID theft-buster, CyberScout, says cyber criminals are trying to spy on you vying for your personal spying on you and trying to get your personal info warns Adam Levin of ID and data theft company Cyberscout. First, watch out for fake emails.

The first one pretends to come from the chancellor at Syracuse University, welcoming students to update their school username and passwords.

"It looks very authentic you give it the log in information and all of sudden, you've given your information to a hacker." Levin said. He warns the hacker will next use your login to slip into your bank accounts.

Next beware of app attacks, like games enticing you to download them. "These are all designed to have something to do with back to school; whether it's a deal you can't pass up or a way to cheat successfully on your exams," Levin said.

But if you're allowing the app access to your camera contacts or even billing, you could expose a lot more than your identity.

Scammers also know students are on a tight budget. Fake textbook websites out there may offer discount deals, but are really designed to steal your credit card info. It's very important to check and make sure it's a legitmate website. Look for the http "S" and padlock icon in the address bar to make sure it's secure.

Employment swindles are rife on campus too, students searching for part-time jobs are falling victim to phony work schemes. Scammers hire you over email, then send you a fake check to make you think you're getting paid.

Next beware of tuition tricks. Scholarship offers on your social media stream which guarantee grants are fake. So are promises to erase student loan debt.

The last popular scam comes in the form of a serious threat from scammers masquerading as the Internal Revenue Service.

"They tell you that you owe and if you don't pay you're going to go to jail," Levin said.

Remember, the IRS will not text, email or call you to collect debts. If you get a call that tells you to get a prepaid money card or wire money, hang up it's scam.
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