Phone scams targeting international students at UB

Published December 21, 2018 at 10:38 AM

Students from UB have been receiving scam calls from individuals claiming to be officials from the Department of Homeland Security.

The calls typically follow this format:

  1. The callers are using internal university phone numbers begining with (716) 645-xxxx, and are specifically using UB’s ISS phone number: (716) 645-2258. 
  2. The callers identify themselves as DHS officials and direct students to a legitimate webpage that shows a deportation policy.
  3. They then threaten students to comply with their instructions or face immediate deportation.
  4. The students are told to leave their home for some secluded place and not talk to any school authorities.
  5. They solicit money from students, often asking them to pay using gift cards.

Please be aware that:

  • The DHS or other government agency will NEVER call you asking for money or personal identifiable information, such as social security number, passport number or visa number.
  • Do not be fooled by phone numbers. Scammers can use software to mimic legitimate or legitimate-seeming numbers (numbers that start with 645, for example).

If you receive this kind of call, follow this procedure:

  • Don’t be afraid. Scammers prey on fear.
  • Hang up! Do not engage.
  • If you want to make sure that it was not a legitimate call from the UB ISS Office, please call the office at (716) 645-2258
  • If they call back, do not answer.
  • Notify us with as soon as possible.
  • Report to the call to UPD at (716) 645-2222.

For more information on common scams, please visit The ISS website.