Canada is emerging as the hub of educational upgradation for students coming from all over the world. It is making more and more international students interested in the educational schemes of the nation. However, many students don’t always get accepted by favorable individuals and therefore end up in circumstances, mentally and economically exploited by fraudsters.
In case you are preparing to get admitted to one of the renowned universities of Canada and want to be prepared for the possibility of coming across any scams, keep reading.
Kinds of scams common within Canada
Even though the rate of such fraud is low in Canada, being one of the safest countries in the world, it is always better to shield oneself with awareness. Following are some of the common types of scams that international students may face and how to prevent them:
Visa/IRCC/CBSA arrest warrant scams
As the students step into this foreign world, they gradually get acquainted with Canadian organizations and governmental bodies. They strive to learn and accept the differences as well as relish their freedom in a foreign country.
However, not all students get called by immigration consultants for the purpose of securing a visa. Yet when they do, it might mean that their contacts have been found by fake officials. They claim themselves to be representatives of government institutions like IRCC.
In their attempt to extract money through threats of arrest, they persuade you to pay fake fees and fines or insist on the need to share personal, sensitive information. You may also receive fake calls from Canadian police or CBSA claiming to clear out a random fake arrest warrant for a sum of money.
What to do: Always remember that no such demands will be made by any of the government bodies and in case you get such a call immediately verify the authenticity by contacting the departmental office or lodge a complaint in your regional police station.
Phone, text message, Email, and Phishing scams
It is a very common mode of misleading students where the scammers pretend to be individuals from some official body. They often inform that some sensitive regulation has been violated and so the person needs to go into hiding or pay money to save themselves. The motive remains the same: to collect personal information or extract money.
They take the help of links and unsolicited files to convince the receivers to share information like account details, passwords, and so on. This often leads to debit or credit card fraud as the scammer gets access to your account details and makes purchases or withdraws money from the card.
What to do: Be aware of the kind of emails that you receive and do not just click on a link without checking its authenticity. You should keep monitoring the information on your account to catch any mishaps and take action immediately.
While in the process of getting familiar with the new habitat and academic environment, international students often become the prey of scammers and fraudsters. Moreover, technology and the internet have made it very easy for scammers to prey on international students looking for financial help. They often warrant scholarships and financial support in return for a minimal pay of a certain sum of money.
What to do: In order to avoid such scams make sure that you have done your research. You should never pay without knowing or consulting anyone more experienced than you.
Along with this is the scam of fake landlords with cheap rental rates for students looking for off-campus stays. These ads normally pop up on social media sites where there is no proper regulation to put up an advertisement. It so happens that these landlords are unable to show the place physically for whatever reason but require the deposit without delay.
What to do: You must visit the place of stay and read the contract thoroughly before making any kind of payment. You can find good places to stay on reputed sites rather than trusting too-good-to-be-true offers.
As the students enjoy their newly acquired freedom, they often try to arrange their cost of living by working on their own. This is how you can get associated with fake recruiters who often take the help of fake forms to collect sensitive information from people like you. Moreover, they ask for an early deposit to get recruited.
What to do: Do not work with a company without receiving an offer letter and be aware of the information that you are sharing. Any kind of talk on paid training sessions or mandatory fees is a confirmed sign of job scammers.
Most of these common practices of preying on international students happen due to the lack of prior knowledge and proper understanding of the country. It, therefore, becomes necessary to be suspective of any individual or organization asking for personal information or money transaction. One should prepare enough through research and use their presence of mind to evade such frauds.