INDIANAPOLIS— The Federal Trade Commission issued a warning Wednesday about scammers now targeting college students.
Here’s how the scam works.
Typically, you receive an email claiming to be from the “Financial Department” of your university which tells you to click on a link to get a message about your COVID-19 economic stimulus check.
It’s a phishing scam, according to the FTC.
If you click to “log in,” you could be giving your user name, password, or other personal information to scammers, while possibly downloading malware onto your device, the Federal Trade Commission warned.
The FTC gave the following tips to protect yourself
- Check it out. If you have concerns about an email, contact the sender directly. Look up their phone number or website yourself. Don’t click on a link. That way, you’ll know you’re not about to call a scammer or follow a link that will download malware.
- Take a closer look. While some phishing emails look completely legit, bad grammar and spelling can be a tip-off to phishing. Another clue that the email is not really from your school: they use the wrong department name. In one example we’ve seen, the scammers called themselves the Financial Dept instead of the Financial Aid Department.
You can also report phishing to the FTC at ftc.gov/complaint.