Scammers target University students

Anne Millerbernd

Scammers posing as law enforcement officials have targeted University of Minnesota students to steal their personal information, according to a public safety update sent Wednesday.

The callers, usually impersonating an FBI agent or a police officer, call students from what appears to be a University Police Department phone number, according to the update sent by Vice President for University Services Pamela Wheelock.

The scammers have targeted mostly international students, the update said, using one of two approaches to get their money.

One method is to tell the victim that they have overdue legal or court fees, which they must pay over the phone with their cash or credit card to avoid being arrested, the update said.

In the other method, the caller tells the victim that they owe tax fees to the State of Minnesota. The scammers tell students that if they don’t follow instructions for transferring or depositing the funds, their admission to the University will be canceled.

In the email update, Wheelock advised students and University community members not to provide personal information and instead to contact UMPD at 612-624-2677.