Heading to standardized testing seasons, high school students are busy preparing for the test. SAT and ACT are the most common tests for college admission. This is such a stressful season for most students. Family members are also involved in one way or another to help with college search and application process. Everyone is in a hectic situation and scammers take advantage of it. Many of scammers pose themselves as members of educational organizations. They claim to provide quality test preparation materials to high school students’ parents. This is something you need to avoid.
What the scam looks like
It is not uncommon for parents to receive calls from scammers who claim themselves from College Board, PSAT and AP test facilitator, SAT company, or any other educational institutions. The scammers usually call with such words and voice which make them appear and sound credible. Many people fall victims because scammers convince them by possessing personal information such as the name of the student, the student’s high school, etc. Some scammers even manipulate their ID and locations to make victims believe they are calling from official College Board number.
The scammers then offer test prep materials in exchange for an address, credit card, and deposit. They claim the deposit will be refunded once the test materials are returned to them. However, victims will never receive neither refund nor test prep materials.
Can you avoid being scammed?
It is pretty easy for scammers to find your basic personal information such as the student living in your household and their high school name. Hence, here are several tips to help you avoid these kind of scammers during college admission season:
- Keep in mind that College Board does not make any unsolicited calls to students or parents.
- College Board has their own system to keep sensitive information through secure online portal. They will never ask for passwords, account information, or even credit card details over email or phone calls.
- Regardless of the situation, never provide your bank account information to anyone even if they claim to be someone from the bank.
- If you receive call from someone claimed to be from College Board, double check its origins by contacting College Board directly at their official number.
- Pay with credit card instead of checking or saving account if you need to pay for test preparation service. And make sure to research what kind of consumer protection your credit card offers.
If you are parent, you are most likely to receive calls from scammer claiming to be from College Board providing test prep materials. It is important to check with your children and their school to see if they are connected to any of the calls you have received before moving forward. If you are a student who are interested in standardized test prep materials, check your high school counselling office first to see if they have free or discounted materials available for you. You can also take advantage of free online SAT test prep on College Board’s official website.