Warning! Scammers are calling college students and their parents pretending to be employees of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). They’re demanding payment toward what they call a “student tax!” The thing is, there’s no such tax and that’s not the IRS calling. So don’t give them and penny and don’t share any information with them!
Beside the reference to a nonexistent tax, how can you tell it’s a scam? Remember, the IRS never calls to demand the immediate payment of taxes owed, and it never requires payment by one particular method — not by credit card, not by debit card, not by gift card, and not by wire transfer! If the party on the other end of the line does any of this, you’re dealing with a dirt ball who’s trying to swindle you.
Some of these calls may be robocalls, and sometimes they come as voice mails. Often the scammers use “spoofing” technology so the number on your caller ID looks like it’s coming from the IRS. It’s not!
By the way, federal education loan borrowers are also getting calls demanding immediate payment on their debts by credit card, debit card, etc. These, too, are con games. If you’re not sure, get the name and phone number of the company that’s supposedly calling you, and then find “NSLDS for Students” on the web to confirm the name and number of the company Washington actually hired to manage the loans it made to you.
If some crook tries to swindle you about any of this, call the U.S. Department of the Treasury Inspector General’s office at 1-800-366-4484 right away to report it! You could also call the U.S. Department of Education Inspector General’s Hotline at 1-800-647-8733. Above all, don’t become one of the more than 8,000 Americans who’ve lost over $44 million in the last three years to these rip-offs!
There’s a special place in hell awaiting the scumbags who try to scam money from honest people. But if you’re a college parent or student, the best thing you can do for now is to make sure these slime buckets don’t make off with your money or your information. Instead, tell them to stick it, hang up, and call the Inspector General!
College Affordability Solutions wants to help you keep your money for college safe. Suspicious about a call you’ve received? Call (512) 366-5354 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for help.