Consumer Alert: Scammers are targeting college students through phishing schemes

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HONOLULU (KHON2) – The Better Business Bureau says college students are highly susceptible to identity theft with many scams tailored toward them.

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The BBB says some of the top scams targeting college students include employment and fake apartment, books and moving service schemes.

These are all types of phishing scams.

“A lot of times those links will have malware that is now downloaded onto your phone or to whatever device it is and then they can steal information about you,” said Roseann Freitas BBB Hawaii Marketplace Manger. “They can get personal information as well as possibly passwords to some pretty key accounts.”

Another top scam aimed towards college students includes student loan debt relief fraud.

“They’re going to want you to fill out this form with this information. Of course that information that you’re filling out is very important, because it has your name, possibly your social security number, your birth date, your address. All of those pieces of information that they need, they could start a new account in your name.”

Online shopping can be another high risk place for identity theft. The BBB says, make sure to only shop on reputable websites.

“Do your homework and go to the BBB website or other platforms to make sure this is a real business. When you shop, use a credit card and don’t use your debit card. You want to protect your finances.”

The BBB suggests checking credit card statements frequently to prevent fraud.

“You can get a credit report free each week until April of 2021. Usually it’s only once a year. So you can go to the Annual Credit Report website and get that free and make sure there’s nothing on there that you weren’t aware of.”

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