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International Student Services

Avoid Phishing Scams in the US

Unfortunately, several sophisticated SCAMS have been created by criminals around the world to solicit money from people. International Students in the US may feel especially vulnerable when a person calls them directly, claiming to be from the US Government, stating that their immigration status is in jeopardy if they do not pay the caller immediately. These callers may claim to be from DHS, ICE, USCIS, SEVP, CBP or the , which are all official US Government offices. These offices will NEVER call directly, forcing an individual to make an immediate payment under threat of deportation.

Scams can happen online and by phone to get money from you.

If someone demands money from you, threatens you, or asks you to pay quickly, or to wire them money immediately, it is likely a scam.

Immigration Scams (DHS, ICE, USCIS, SEVP, CBP)

  • These officials will NEVER ask you to transfer money to them immediately via Western Union or PayPal.
  • They will NEVER ask you to pay fees to a person on the phone or by email.

Tax Scams (IRS)

  • If a person calls your phone and tells you to pay money or else you will need to leave the US, this is a scam and is not true.
  • The real IRS will NEVER call you or ask you to pay them immediately.

Personal Reputation Scams

  • Email from someone claiming to know something embarrassing you’ve done in your home or something you may have searched online.
  • Demand money from you or they will tell your contacts about the embarrassing thing.
  • This is a scam and is not true!

Paying your SUNY New Paltz Invoice

  • NEVER give your New Paltz User ID and password to anyone else.
  • NEVER use an anonymous third party individual to pay your tuition for you.
  • NEVER use Credit Card or Bank Account information provided to you by someone else.
  • DON'T assume that someone can get a better currency exchange rate for you.
  • Make your payments directly to SUNY New Paltz through your www.my.newpaltz.edu or in person at the Student Accounts Office, or via Flywire.
  • Contact the Student Accounts Office if you are unsure about how to safely make your payment.

How to Report Scams

  • First, if you are in New Paltz, report the scam to the Campus Police: 845-257-2222.
  • If you are in another city, report it to the local Police Department.
  • Then, report it to the International Student Programs Office: international@newpaltz.edu 845-257-3595.

Additional Information, Resources and Reporting Options

(UCSIS) US Citizenship and Immigration Services:

https://www.uscis.gov/avoid-scams

https://www.uscis.gov/avoid-scams/common-scams

https://www.uscis.gov/avoid-scams/report-scams

(SEVP) Student and Exchange Visitor Program:

https://studyinthestates.dhs.gov/2017/05/students-protect-yourself-from-common-scams

https://studyinthestates.dhs.gov/2015/04/students-protect-yourself-from-immigration-scams

(IRS) Internal Revenue Services:

https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/tax-scamsconsumer-alerts

https://www.irs.gov/privacy-disclosure/report-phishing

(DHS) Department of Homeland Security, (ICE) US Immigration and Customs Enforcement:

Homeland Security Investigations Tip Line

(CBP) US Customs and Border Protection:

https://www.cbp.gov/