ShareThis Page
News

Duquesne, CMU officials warn of scam

| Friday, Nov. 21, 2014, 11:30 p.m.

Officials at Duquesne and Carnegie Mellon universities in Pittsburgh are warning their campuses about a credit card scam that has targeted international college students.

The scam resurfaced recently, almost a month after officials at CMU said students there were first contacted.

Officials at Duquesne said con artists have called at least two students claiming to be police officers and seeking to collect on fines. Although the initial complaint dated to the start of the fall semester, a second student reported a similar call last week.

The callers ask students to provide a credit card number or a Green Dot prepaid card to pay their fines, or face arrest.

A Duquesne University spokeswoman said one international student there lost several hundred dollars to the con artists earlier this semester but was reluctant to file a police report. A second student reported a similar call last week.

“The office of international programs sent out a memo to alert all international students,” said university spokeswoman Karen Ferrick-Roman.

Jeffrey Besong, chief of police at Point Park University, said his office put out a campus-wide alert on Thursday after authorities at CMU — who first put out an alert on Oct. 22 — notified them that several foreign students in the city‘s Oakland section had been contacted earlier this week by con artists claiming to be police.

“I just passed it on to our students just in case. We do have a large international population here,” Besong said.

Besong said he has heard no complaints from students at Point Park but wanted to warn them that police do not follow such protocols to collect fines. He asked that students contact university police should they receive such calls.

“If you are contacted in this fashion, please hang up — do not talk with or provide any information to the caller,” Besong said.

Debra Erdley is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-320-7996 or derdley@tribweb.com.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.

click me