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Campus Alert: Email Scam

UVM Police Services been notified of a scam email with the subject “UVM MESSAGE” offering employment assisting students with disabilities.  This email appears to come from a UVM affiliate. This email is not from any entity of the University of Vermont, and is instead from a currently unknown individual who is spoofing the UVM affiliate’s email address.

Since the beginning of the academic year, UVM Police has received multiple reports of email scams targeting UVM students, staff, and faculty. These scams follow a similar pattern:

-          They look more legitimate than usual scam emails, through the use of the UVM logo and/or a UVM email address.

-          The text of the email seems fairly professional.

-          The emails typically describe a “doctor” or other alleged UVM affiliate who is working abroad and reaching out for administrative help.

-           Because the individual is abroad, they are unable to meet for an interview until they return.

-          The messages indicate that if the party is impressed by work while abroad, there is the potential for long-term employment after a future interview at an unspecified date.

-          The email asks interested parties to send their full name, address, email, alternate email, and mobile number.

When individuals respond to these scam emails, the scammers typically request that victims “send mail for them,” while providing instructions to purchase large numbers of gift cards and/or wire money through Western Union. If the assistants refuse, the scammers will then start to make threats.

Identifying scams like this can be difficult. Remember, before sending any personal information over the internet, you should take steps to verify where you are sending it and to whom. Here are some steps that you can take to help identify scams:

1)      Look at the sender’s email address; sometimes it is not an official UVM email address or the email address does not match the sender’s name. Other times the sender’s name may not match the name in the email’s signature.

2)      Do not reply to unsolicited job offers as these are likely scams, especially if the offer claims that you have been “selected” by an office at the University or involves running errands, replying to emails, mailing letters, or will take up little time and pay very well.

3)      Look for minor spelling and grammatical errors, which may be indicators of a scam.

4)      Do not send personal information to an individual you do not know, or in response to an email that you did not solicit. If you receive an email asking you to reply with personal information, it is probably a scam.

5)      If the opportunity seems too good to be true or seems suspicious, it probably is.

If you believe you’ve received a scam email, you can forward it to UVM’s Information Security department by following the instructions on the IT Security webpage (found here: You can also follow the Information Security Office on Twitter (@uvminfosec) for updates on ongoing scams, phishing, and helpful tips on how to keep your information safe.

If you believe you have replied to a scam email or been the victim of a scam, contact UVM Police at 802-656-3473.

Alert sent on 09/06/2019 at 1:31PM EDT


UVM Police Services


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