1-The infamous T-Shirt

The first week of college is an exciting time.  Students are away from home and many new things are happening.  In the corner of the campus, imagine a bunch of people are giving away very interesting looking T-Shirts and when you approach them to get one, they have you fill out a form.  If you don’t read it carefully, you will never know that the form is an application for a credit card.  That might be your first credit card. 

In a few weeks, you will receive your credit card with a minimum of $350 dollars or maybe even a bit higher.  What you do with the credit has something to do with how educated you are regarding money.

2- Rental Scams

You have decided to live off-campus and looking for a place to live.  You see an ad online and the price is affordable and the location is great.  There is an application online that asks  for your name, address, social and date of birth.  It also is asking for a $25 application fee that requires a credit card.  You either have your own or ask your parents to give you a credit card.  Now imagine this:  after the “property manager” receives your fraudulent rental application along with your credit card information, they disappear.  The credit card you have given has been charged for a large amount of money and your social security and personal information is stolen.

If this happens, you need to immediately freeze your credit report.  To do that, go to the following link:



3- Scholarship Scams

Please go to U.S. Department of Education and read about loans and scholarships.  Also go to  Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) if you are trying to apply for student loans.

Be aware of online scholarship applications that ask for your checking account for verification.  They are stealing your information and your money.

4- Identity Theft

Be suspicious of all calls asking for personal information.  If you think you need to keep talking, ask for their phone number and simply call them back.

  • School mailboxes are not always secure, so have sensitive mail sent to a permanent address, such as a parent’s home or a post office box.
  • Do not loan your credit or debit card to anyone. Even to very close friends.
  • Social Security cards, financial documents, and unused credit cards should not be kept in school dormitories.
  • Locate a shredder and destroy all credit card offers.
  • Use online paperless for financial statements.
  • Review your credit report at least once a year to look for unauthorized accounts. Use comto see your report. This website provides credit reports for Trans Union, Experian and Equifax once a year, free of charge.