October 31, 2008, Newsletter Issue #140: Tips for Avoiding Scam Scholarship Writing Contests

Tip of the Week

While there are many legitimate scholarship writing contests, there are also a number of scams disguised as scholarship competitions. Scholarship scams have become so commonplace that the Federal Trade Commission has issued information regarding the warning signs of detecting scam scholarship programs.

Here are some signs to watch for to be sure that you don’t fall for any of the fraudulent scholarship writing contests.

Guarantees of winning an award Request for an advance fee payment You are named a “finalist” in a contest you never entered You are asked to pay money or purchase something to become a finalist Request for a credit card number or bank account number No legitimate scholarship competition requires an up-front payment or purchase of any kind. Additionally, no one can guarantee that anyone else will win a scholarship.

If you become aware of a fraudulent program disguised as a scholarship competition, you may report it to The National Fraud Information Center at 800-876-7060 or to The Federal Trade Commission at 877-FTC-HELP.

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