As with any business sector that involves the lending or giving of money, there will always be several individuals and companies that will sit and wait to take advantage of naïve people in need of said funds. Unfortunately, the college loan, grant, and scholarship industry are ripe with scammers. Notice that we used the term “industry." This is because the hunt for college loans, grants, and scholarships is exactly that, an industry within itself. Every year, up to $4 billion is awarded to college students whether in the form of a grant, loan, or scholarship. Due to this reality of these scam networks there will never be a shortage of individuals seeking to take advantage of parents/students in need of financial assistance for their higher education needs, unfortunately, this makes for a perfect dream scenario for scammers – as they are fully aware that most applicants, the parents or their soon to be freshmen, have absolutely no idea where to start. More than likely the scammers believe that people are naïve when it comes to the warning signs that they are being scammed. As the saying goes, “There’s a sucker born every minute.” Via this scam alert posting, it is our goal at hbcucollegegrants.com to help our visitors avoid the sucker list of the unfortunate souls who get scammed every year in the rat race for the golden ticket. Please be aware of the most tried and true scams that are mostly executed.
Be aware of any sort of mail, whether it is an email or standard letter stating that your soon to be freshman has been selected for a grant, loan, or scholarship. The first question that should come to mind is, “How in the hell is my child eligible for this loan, grant, or scholarship when neither of us applied for it?”
Be aware of any company, individual, or consultant who asks for an upfront advance processing fee. This is a red flag! Also, some of these clowns will try to hit you with a pre-tax administration fee if they can. As we mentioned prior, it is a dirty shark infested arena to have to swim in especially if you are not guided in the right direction. Fortunately for you and other visitors, hbcucollegegrants.com is here to help point you down the safe and protected path.
Brace yourself for this one. Some scammers have really stepped up their hustle game to another level. They will actually forward you a check, a fake one of course. Now you and your child are excited. The check looks as real as can be and in your mind, you got new money waiting to be spent on your child’s higher education needs. But hold on, not so fast. Here is what the scammers will do next. As you and your soon to be freshman are taking in all the joy and happiness from the check, the scammer will contact you, they will make it seem as if there was a slight error and that they overpaid you. It is all a part of the act. Their next line will be something in terms of, “all you have to do is simply send the remaining balance and all will be well moving forward.” Sadly, it will take a few days for the parents to realize that they have been scammed or as the youngsters say, “You’ve been played.”
With this scam, the goal is to get you to forward over vital information belonging to you and your child, either your or your child’s SSN and banking information. That is the ultimate prize for a scammer.
Here’s another beauty: Do not fall for the multitude of financial aid seminars floating around each year. Especially the ones with fancy names attached to them such as higher education scholarship foundation. This is just to grab your attention. Also, stay away from the companies and individuals trying to entice you via telemarketing on how they can arrange for your child to get the said grant, loan, or scholarship.
In regard to higher education consultants, this one here is tricky! I say this because there are truly honest, sincere, and damn good higher education consultants out there. I am a witness to this. A relative of mine was gratefully able to improve her borderline GPA and ACT score. This in turn got her over the hump and enrolled into the HBCU of her choice. Unfortunately, there are scammers out there on the consultant side of higher education as well. The golden rule to making sure you are not dealing with a higher education scam consultant is to know that they will never ask for money upfront in advance. Let this be another red flag warning.
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