INFORMATIONAL MESSAGE FROM ALERT CAROLINA: FBI Warns of Scams Targeting College Communities

UNC Students, Staff and Faculty:
According to reports recently released by the FBI, college students across the United States have been targeted to participate in work-from-home scams through emails to their school accounts that recruit them for payroll and/or human resource positions with fictitious companies. The “position” then requires the student to provide his/her bank account number to receive a deposit and then transfer a portion of the funds to another bank account, which is involved in the scam. Here’s more information on how the scam works:

Similarly, university employees are receiving fraudulent e-mails indicating a change in their human resource status through emails containing a login link to their human resources website which looks legitimate. That login information is then used to access the employee’s official human resources account and alter direct deposit settings, diverting paycheck to the scammer’s account.  Here’s more information on this particular scam:

Here are ways the FBI recommends to protect yourself from this and any scam:

- If a job offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
- Never accept a job that requires the depositing of funds into your account and wiring them to different accounts.
- Look for poor use of the English language in e-mails such as incorrect grammar, capitalization, and tenses. Many of the scammers who send these messages are not native English speakers.
- Never provide credentials of any kind such as bank account information, login names, passwords, or any other identifying information in response to a recruitment e-mail.
- Forward suspected e-mails to the University’s IT personnel ( and tell your friends to be on the lookout for the scam.

Information Technology Services here at Carolina maintains documentation for members of our community that have questions about these scams and/or need assistance related to these practices: Students, faculty and staff can also contact the University's Information Technology Response Center (ITRC) by calling 962-HELP.

If you have been a victim of a scam, you may file a complaint with the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center at (please reference this informational notice). To keep abreast of scams targeting college campuses, access press releases issued by the FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center website at:

About Informational Messages: The University sends an Informational Message to inform the campus community about a situation that is not an emergency but is expected to be of significant interest to the campus. An Informational Message is one of three tiers of communication under the University’s revised emergency communications plan. Emergency Warning refers to a siren activation for a significant emergency.  And a Timely Warning is issued if there is a continuing danger AND notification will not compromise law enforcement.