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Watch For Scams Newsletter. Fictitious 'Work-from-home' Scam Targeting University Students
February 03, 2015

Fictitious 'Work-from-home' Scam Targeting University Students

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Fictitious 'Work-from-home' Scam Targeting University Students

University students are being targeted to participate in work-from-home scams. The “position” simply requires the student to provide his/her bank account number to receive a deposit and then transfer a portion of the funds to another bank account. The other account is involved in the scam that the student has now helped carry out. The funds the student receives and is directed elsewhere have been stolen by cyber criminals. Participating in the scam is a crime and could lead to the student’s bank account being closed due to fraudulent activity.

Here’s how the scam works:

• The student is asked to provide his/her bank account information under the guise of setting up direct deposit for his/her pay

• The scammers will add the student’s bank account to a victim employee’s direct deposit information to redirect the victim’s payroll deposit to the student’s account

• The student will receive the payroll deposit from the victim’s employer in the victim’s name

• The student will be directed to withdraw funds from the account and send a portion of the deposit, via wire transfer, to other individuals involved in the scam

Consequences of Participating in the Scam:

• The student’s bank account will be identified by law enforcement as being involved in the fraud

• The victim employee has his/her pay stolen by the scammers utilizing the student’s bank account

• Without the student’s participation, the scam could not be carried out, so he/she facilitated the theft of the paycheck

• The student could be arrested and prosecuted. A criminal record will stay with the student for the rest of his/her life and will have to be divulged on future job applications, which could prevent the student from being hired

• The student’s bank account may be closed due to fraudulent activity and a report could be filed by the bank

• This could adversely affect the student’s credit record

Tips on how to Protect Yourself from this Scam:

• If a job offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is

• Never accept a job that requires the depositing of funds into your account and wiring them to different accounts

• Look for poor use of the English language in e-mails such as incorrect grammar, capitalization, and tenses. Many of the scammers who send these messages are not native English speakers

• Never provide credentials of any kind such as bank account information, login names, passwords, or any other identifying information in response to a recruitment e-mail

• Forward these e-mails to the university’s IT personnel and tell your friends to be on the lookout for the scam

•This could adversely affect the student’s credit record

If you believe you have been a victim of this type of scam you should promptly report it to the IC3's website at The IC3's complaint database links complaints together to refer them to the appropriate law enforcement agency for case consideration.

Remember - always watch for scams!


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