Avoiding Phone Scams and Fraud

Unfortunately international students and scholars are sometimes targeted by individuals attempting to scam or defraud you. 

A few ways to identify a phone scam:

  • The caller ID will be a phone number that looks like it is coming from a government agency or law enforcement/police.
  • The caller will claim that you owe money or have committed some kind of offense or crime and may use threats or intimidation to get you to do what they want you to do.
  • The caller will try and keep you on the phone.

It is important to know that government agency and law enforcement officials will never call you to ask for money over the phone.  They will never ask you to provide credit/debit card or gift card numbers, wire transfers, bank routing numbers, or to make bitcoin deposits for any purpose. 

Never divulge your personal or financial information to unknown callers.

If you receive a suspicious call, contact Safety & Security.  Below are important resources for more information:

USCIS webpage on how to avoid scams and how to report them

ICE Public Safety Alert webpage:  https://www.ice.gov/contact/ope 

Homeland Security Investigations Tip Form to report calls claiming to be SEVP officials:  https://www.ice.gov/webform/ice-tip-form  

Federal Trade Commission information for filing a complaint