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Central Michigan University police are warning students to be wary of what shows up in their email inbox.
The police department is investigating several incidents of email fraud through the university email system, according to a Facebook post issued by the CMU Police Department Sept. 20.
Over the past few weeks, there have been three incidents where students have received scam emails offering them fraudulent internships or business opportunities, said Lt. Cameron Wassman.
In each incident, a student received an email from someone representing an alleged employment or internship company. The victims are asked to provide personal information to the company, including phone numbers and emails.
After contacting the victims by phone or email, the alleged company asked victims to purchase gift cards and send pictures of the activated cards back to the company. There have also been requests for the students to purchase blank check paper to print fraudulent checks.
"A legitimate business will never use activated gift cards for payment," the CMUPD Facebook post warned. "Similarly, a legitimate business will not ask you to print your own checks."
Of the three reported victims who have received the emails, two students have sent the requested information to the fraudulent company, Wassman said.
CMUPD posted on Facebook on Friday afternoon, warning students to be cautious of the fraudulent emails to prevent further scams.
"While three incidents doesn't sound like a lot, we want to prevent people from being victimized," Wassman said. "Usually if people get suspicious emails they just delete them, but it's important that people don't fall victim to these email scams."
CMU police warned students to be wary of unsolicited emails offering jobs or services. Police urge students to verify the legitimacy of a company or sender before giving out any personal information.
More information about online security can be found on the Federal Trade Commission website.
Wassman said students are advised to delete any suspicious emails they receive. If students who have been victimized by a fraudulent company wish to report the incident to police, they can call CMUPD dispatch at (989) 774-3081.
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