For parents who have children getting ready to start college or students who are already in college, finding money to pay for higher education is usually a priority. For many people, using student loans, grants and scholarships are some of the ways to finance the education expenses. A recent scam that has hit Wisconsin is taking aim at people who are trying to finance higher education.
This scam involves someone calling the victim and claiming to be with the federal government. The caller will say that you have won a scholarship that you can use at any university of your choice. In some cases, the caller may mention a grant. The catch to the scholarship or grant is that you have to pay taxes on it. The caller will tell you to get a prepaid card, from a store like Walgreens. You will never have to pay a processing fee on a government grant, notes the Wisconsin Department of Consumer Protection
During the call, the caller may ask you for personal information and financial information. If you happen to do either of those things, you will have to keep a close eye on your credit report and your bank accounts. Contact your bank immediately so they can get you a new account number, so you aren't going to lose money.
Because going to college is so expensive, many people who realize this scam is too good to be true might fall back on credit cards to pay for expenses. If you have charged so much on your credit card that you are behind on your payments and don't see how you can get caught up, you might have legal options to get your credit card debt under control. Looking into all your options to get rid of debt, including bankruptcy, might help you to make an informed decision that can help your financial future.
Source: WBAY.com, "Scholarship Scam: Local Student Learns Tough Lesson" Tammy Elliott, Feb. 03, 2014