Scam Warning to International Students

Published: 26 August 2015

Scam Warning to International Students

International students have been approached by fraudsters saying that if students pay their student fees through them, they can get a 10% discount. Students have unknowingly been victims.

What is the scam?

Students provide their student ID and the fraudsters then pay the student fees online with skimmed credit cards. Students can see that their fee has been paid, and they then pay the fraudster an amount equal to their fee minus 10%.

What does this mean for students?

Students face having to pay their fees twice because their first payment was made fraudulently.

Have you been contacted?

If you have been contacted or think you have made a payment to these illegitimate agents please email StudentAdministration@unsw.edu.au, international.student@unsw.edu.au or come in person to Student Development International immediately.

Protect yourself from scams*

We have recently received reports from students about scams. Contact has been initiated from either personal contact or social media sites, in particular WeChat.

  • Never send money or give credit card details, online account details, or copies of important personal documents to anyone you don’t know or trust and never by email.
  • Avoid any arrangement with a stranger that asks for up-front payment via money order, wire transfer, international funds transfer, pre-loaded card or electronic currency. It is rare to recover money sent this way.
  • Note that government departments will never contact you asking you to pay money upfront in order to claim a fee or rebate.
  • Legitimate credit card or loan providers will not ask you to pay a fee to guarantee approval, and banks and credit unions will only allow you to have a credit card if you meet their criteria. No one can guarantee these approvals in exchange for a fee.
  • Seek advice from an independent professional such as a lawyer, accountant or financial planner if in doubt.
  • Verify the identity of the contact by calling the relevant organisation directly – find them through an independent source such as a phone book or online search. Do not use the contact details provided in the message sent to you.

*All tips are suggested by Scamwatch

For urgent notices on scams visit - ScamWatch.gov.au