BBB warns UA students, faculty to be cautious of ID theft - Tucson News Now

BBB warns UA students, faculty to be cautious of ID theft

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TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

University of Arizona students, faculty and visitors are warned to be cautious of identity theft and Internet fraud around campus.

The Federal Trade Commission received more identity theft complaints from 20 to 29-year-old consumers than any other age group in 2013, according to the Better Business Bureau Serving Southern Arizona.

The BBB says most scams appear through emails, online advertisements or job postings. It urges students and faculty to “click with caution” and to be aware of the following unique scams targeting universities across the country:

- Spear phishing e-mails are being sent to university employees that appear to be from their employer. The e-mail contains a link and claims some type of issue has risen requiring them to enter their log-in credentials. Once employees provide their user name and password, the perpetrator accesses the university's computer system to redirect the employees' payroll allocation to another bank account. The university employees' payroll allocations are being deposited into students' accounts. These students were hired through online advertisements for work-at-home jobs, and provided their bank account information to the perpetrators to receive payment for the work they performed. 

- Scammers are posting online advertisements soliciting college students for administrative positions in which they would receive checks via the mail or e-mail. Students are directed to deposit the checks into their accounts, and then print checks and/or wire money to an individual. Students are never asked to provide their bank account information to the perpetrators. 

- Hackers are gaining access to students' university accounts, and stealing student loan money earmarked for tuition, textbooks, and living expenses. 

- Perpetrators are obtaining professors' Personally Identifiable Information and using it to file fraudulent income tax returns. 

- Some universities have been victims of intrusions, resulting in the perpetrators being able to access university databases containing information on their employees and students. 

The University of Arizona's first day of school is Aug. 25.

For more information and to learn about keeping your identity safe online, visit www.stopthinkconnect.org.

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