STUDENTS are notified of a fraudulent email that promises to repay loans under the CARES Act.
The Sun saw an email claiming student loans could be eligible for a stimulus discount.
It calls on recipients to “submit” an application by January 31.
In August, President Biden approved plans to extend the pause on federal student loan payments through Jan. 31.
But, on December 22, the White House revealed that the pause had been extended for another 90 days, bringing it to May 1.
Biden said, “We know millions of student borrowers are still dealing with the impacts of the pandemic and need more time to resume payments.”
There is no need to submit an “application” by the end of this month.
The email reads: “This applies to all loan statuses, including defaulted loans and garnishments.”
The sender urged the recipient to call a “dedicated eligibility line” at 209-332-8233.
In the fraudulent email, the recipient was warned that benefits would only be applied on a “first come, first served” basis.
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They were also asked to provide their personal validation code when talking to a “representative”.
Ben Brigida, director of SOC operations at Expel, told TechRepublic that the attackers were trying to trick people into giving them information.
He added, “The best way to do that is to make the email look legitimate, prompt clear action, and back it up with emotion.”
Scammers want their victims to move quickly so they don’t stop and think if the email is legitimate.
Student borrowers have been targeted by unscrupulous scam artists throughout the Covid pandemic.
Experts say it’s probably too good to be true if you’re offered forgiveness, reports NerdWallet.
Persis Yu, Policy Director of the Student Borrower Protection Center, said, “It used to be called the Obama Loan Forgiveness Scam, and now there is the CARES Act Forgiveness Scam.
“Borrowers should always view advertising that promises forgiveness with skepticism.”
Education officials across the country are urging Americans to pause before sending personal information if they receive a letter about debt forgiveness.
Students should research the validity of the business because many businesses run by scammers do not exist.
Americans should verify the email address used by scammers, as communications about student loans tend to come from a .gov address.
Do not provide your social security number or bank details unless you are absolutely sure the company is legitimate.
If in doubt, just hang up and report the incident to your bank operator.
For students who suspect they have been scammed, it is advisable to close their bank account immediately.
To do this, contact your provider and they will block all pending outgoing payments.
Banking providers may monitor your account for suspicious activity and may take appropriate action.
It may take weeks, months or years for your details to be used for fraudulent purposes. Credit reports should therefore always be monitored.