School Admission Scammers pretend to be admission officers in universities, polytechnics and other higher institutions or have connections with people who work in those institutions in order to defraud unsuspecting and desperate students or parents seeking admission for their wards.
How this scam works
The growing appetite and need for higher education in Nigeria coupled with the difficulty for secondary school leavers to gain admission to same have bred a 'good market' for scammers to thrive.
In fact, in Nigeria, it seems easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for secondary school leavers to gain admission into Nigeria’s higher institutions.
They register phone numbers, clone school websites & email accounts, setup social media pages etc. which they use to reach their victims. Some even go ahead to come up with names of non-existing higher institutions to offer admissions.
They post admission offers from reputable higher institutions, they send you offer you forged admission documents to convince you about the genuineness of their claims. They proceed to ask for fees such as acceptance fees, processing fees, administrative fees, admission fees, and sometimes they even ask for an advance payment of tuition fees.
If you decide to take up their offer, you will be offered a fake admission and you would have wasted your time and money.
- You are randomly contacted by someone claiming to be an admission officer that you have been offered admission to a higher institution.
- You are contacted via free email addresses from Google, yahoo etc. and not from a custom top level domain used by academic institutions such as ".edu" etc.
- You're addressed by a general greeting line such as "Dear applicant" etc. instead of a personalized line addressing you by your name.
- You are hurriedly asked to make payments to make cash payments or transfer funds to personal accounts.
- Where cash is involved, you're asked to bring same to an unofficial location
How to protect yourself
- Never send money to anyone asking you to pay for admission fees or any other fee for that matter via personal accounts.
- All higher institutions have verified account names always matching the name of the respective institution.
- Carry out research to find out the official websites / admission portals of your desired higher institution before providing your personal details.
- Most educational portals owned by higher institutions have their URL's ending with ".edu" or ".edu.ng"