New Students

Watch out for scams or fraud!

It's important to know how to protect yourself against fraud.

Fraud, or a scam, is a scheme performed by a dishonest individual, group, or company in an attempt to obtain money or something else of value. Fraudsters may think you are an easy target because you are away from home, family and friends. 

Protect yourself against scams

Police Scotland Student Online Safety Guide 2023

Police Scotland have put together this guide to provide you with important safety advice on how you can avoid becoming a victim of crime:

Advice to be aware of from the start of University

  • Question any unexpected contact - this includes phone calls, letters, emails or people knocking on your door who you do not recognise
  • Don’t rush into a decision about anything, if it sounds too good to be true, it usually is!
  • If in doubt, speak to someone you trust

Making payments

  • Don’t assume everyone is genuine
  • It’s okay to reject, refuse or ignore requests. Only criminals will try and rush or panic you
  • Only purchase goods and services from legitimate retailers and always take a moment before parting with your money or personal information

Money laundering

Money laundering is the illegal process of making large amounts of money generated by criminal activity appear to have come from a legitimate source. 

Police Scotland is aware of a number of occasions where students have been pressured into taking part in this activity, paying large sums of cash into their bank accounts before being transferred out. 

Money laundering is a criminal offence. If prosecuted, you could face a lengthy custodial sentence.  Don't participate, report it. 

Range of useful advice about scams and frauds (Police Scotland website)

IT security 

  • Be cautious when using social media. Never give out personal information and watch what you share - this can be used to steal your identity and access accounts
  • Keep mobile devices, operating systems and virus protection software up to date. Keep your devices locked if you are not using them, and don’t install software from unofficial sources
  • Choose unique passwords for every account. 
  • Use secure WiFi connections and avoid unencrypted public WiFi. Your standard 3G/4G/5G connection is often more secure than public WiFi available in coffee shops or restaurants
  • If your browser warns you about a site you visit, don’t ignore it, and don’t proceed
  • Avoid phishing and scams. Be wary of any messages that ask for personal information or passwords, or that link to sites that do

Watch a short video on how to avoid online scams and phishing (University log in required)

The University’s Information Security team have some tips you help keep you and your information secure during your time at the University. Following these tips will keep us all safer.

Information Security tips for new students