DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. — Emory police are trying to figure out how schemers obtained personal information about their students.
The information is being used to attempt to scam students by threatening them about their loans. It is part of a nationwide scam that has hit universities all over the country.
Channel 2’s Rachel Stockman has learned Emory University has received a large number of complaints from students about the scam. So far, 70 reports have been filed at the school.
“The scammers did have detailed information regarding their college or university histories,” said Stephen Emmett, a special agent with the FBI.
“They knew my name, they knew I was in the ‘B School.’ That was kind of freaky so they had some sort of information,” said Joanna Pang, who received a call. She says the caller ID showed the “FBI’ number.
The FBI says that the fraudsters are “spoofing” the FBI number – or making it look like someone else is calling
It is not clear how the scammers are obtaining students’ information.
“With regard to fraudulent calls to Emory University students, there is no indication that any confidential student information was obtained from Emory,” said spokesperson Elaine Justice in a statement from Emory University.
Cyber security expert Tony UcedaVelez said students are particularly vulnerable to attacks like these, because they usually have “clean” credit.
He says the information could have been obtained by scammers “scrapping” students’ social media accounts – or through some kind of student database.
“Universities, colleges, the attackers know there is central repository of student personal information. It is easy to do one stop shopping for all that information in one place,” Uceda Velez said.