Sophisticated email and phone scams are everywhere these days. To protect your information, we recommend taking some time to review these safety tips and resources.

Top Five Security Tips

1. Never share your password

2. Don’t click on suspicious links (hover over the link to reveal the actual URL)

3. Don’t open suspicious attachments

4. All emails you receive from OSU will come from an xxx.oregonstate.edu email address

5. Use Duo 2 Step Login

A Common Scam Targeted at Young Adults

Overpayment scheme: An individual is sent a payment significantly higher than an owed amount and is instructed to deposit the money in their bank account and wire transfer the excess funds back to the bank of the individual or company that sent it.

  • This scam may start out as someone trying to hire you to work from home, remote, or online to do small tasks, including paying bills or otherwise handling money.  Example: they will send you a check for $1000, and tell you to keep $300 as your paycheck and send the rest to them, pay their bills, etc. They may ask you to send the excess money as gift cards or money orders. A few days later, the initial check will bounce.
  • They may say they work for your university, but never name the university.
  • They can’t meet with you in person to interview you, quite often because they are “out of the country”, and won’t be back for a while.
  • They will pressure you to work quickly. This is because the check will bounce in a few days, leaving you with an overdrawn bank account.

Tips for avoiding this scheme:

  • OSU will not give your information to off campus employers as a referral. OSU requires the student to apply first through https://jobs.oregonstate.edu/ for on campus employment.
  • Student wages are paid by OSU directly to the student. OSU does not use services like Zelle, Square Cash, Paypal, etc to pay student’s their wages.
  • To be hired at OSU, you have to meet with someone in person, and complete hiring paperwork like I-9s and W-4s.
  • Be aware of unsolicited emails, especially mass emails.
  • Think you may have fallen for this scam? Contact your local police non-emergency number to report fraud and theft. Below are more good resources!

Resources On How To Avoid Scams

OSU Information Services

Information Security Page

Federal Bureau of Investigation

Common Fraud Schemes

Internal Revenue Service

How To Avoid Phishing Scams

Federal Trade Commission

10 Things You Can Do To Avoid Fraud

Avoiding Scams 101

How To Avoid Phishing Scams 

Department Of Education

Avoiding Loan Scams

How To Report Scams

Reporting Suspicious Activity In Your OSU Student Email

Forward any suspicious emails as an attachment to phishing@oregonstate.edu. Do not open any attachments or click any links on a suspicious email. Contact the Information Service Desk at 541-737-8787 if you need additional assistance.

Reporting Loan Scams And Fraud 

If you believe you have been the subject of suspicious activity regarding federal or private student loans, please report the information to the Department of Federal Student Aid (FSA) through the Federal Student Aid Feedback System. FSA works directly with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to investigate and if needed, ban those individuals/companies from operation.