5 Common Financial Scams That Target College Kids

Scammers are commonly known for trying to target people to get money or personal information from them in a deceiving way. Financial scammers are notorious for targeting college students, as students are typically on their own for the first time and looking for easy ways to earn money. The following scams are created to target college students who don’t know any better, so be aware and approach them with caution.

  • Fake Scholarships – Many scammers create fake scholarship scams because they know college students need the money. While there are plenty of legitimate organizations, foundations, and other programs that offer great scholarships, be wary of those that sound sketchy. Most legitimate offers will not have an application fee and do not offer to fill out your information for you, so be especially careful with those.  If a company asks for credit card or bank information or says that they selected you to win a scholarship you haven’t applied for, steer clear and do not fall victim to them.
  • Diploma Mills – Diploma mills are commonly known for offering students cheap courses and a quick degree. Be sure to conduct plenty of research on schools that catch your interest before you enroll with them to ensure that you are attending a learning institution that is accredited. Not only will obtaining a degree from a fake school mean you lose out on the money you paid, but a fake degree is also likely to mean you can kiss your professional job prospects goodbye.
  • Sketchy Student Loans – Businesses and companies offering student loans that aren’t federally backed are a common way to target naive college students who don’t know any better. Make sure you are pursuing student loans that are low interest and federally backed. The best loans to look into are those that are offered by the federal government, as they have low interest rates, and Stafford loans. Information on student loans and federal student aid can be found at FAFSA.
  • College Student Credit Cards – Many colleges and universities across the country have vendors that set up shop on campus to promote special giveaways to college students. Many students sign up for free giveaways that give them t-shirts, gadgets, and other things. What many students don’t know is that signing up to get these things means they are also applying for college student credit cards that often have high interest rates and hidden fees.
  • Buying School Work Help – Some online organizations offer to help students with college essays and research papers by selling them course material to cheat with, according to an article posted on Campus Explorer. Not only are they a scam, you are risking your grades and getting kicked out of your university. The article also states other popular scams that target college students, what they are, and how college students can avoid them.

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