CSU Police report series of fraudulent checks, scams

Matthew Bailey

The Colorado State University Police and Safety Department tweeted Monday morning warning people about fraudulent checks and scams that have recently been reported.

Since the beginning of the fall semester, at least six reports of scams have been reported to CSUPD, according to Dell Rae Ciaravola, the senior communications coordinator at CSU’s Public Safety Team.


“Several different tactics are used in these scam attempts, including unsolicited contact by email, replying to “for sale” ads on Craigslist and making unsolicited offers of employment, claiming to have discovered the potential victim’s email address or resume on CSU student employment lists,” Ciaravola wrote in an email to the Collegian.

In one scam attempt, the suspect contacted a student and offered to purchase a large amount of product from her in connection with her legitimate network marketing business, according to Ciaravola.

The majority of these scammers use common-sounding pseudonyms or anonymous email accounts.

“Funds are often found to have been deposited into accounts outside the U.S. or wired to third-parties, some of whom are unwitting, and victims of scams themselves,” Ciaravola wrote. “In recent scam cases where suspects have been identified, they were not affiliated with CSU.”

The CSU Public Safety Team advises people to be aware of these scam emails by recognizing common elements.

Common elements in scam emails, messages and posts often, but not always, consist of broken English and spelling, punctuation and syntax errors.

“Scam emails routinely appear ‘too good to be true’ from the onset, including inflated offers on Cragislist with no negotiation or face to face contact, lucrative employment offers for very little actual work or suspicious offers to deposit funds with no legitimate employment relationship,” Ciaravola wrote.

Ciaravola wrote that she encouraged people to consider the nature of the email: If an email, message or post seems too good to be true, or if it involves funds transfer, refunds or gift cards, it is virtually always a scam.

Additionally, CSU Police and Safety explained in the tweet published this morning that any offer of employment or offer to purchase an item that involves depositing a check or sending funds or gift cards to a stranger is a scam.

Collegian reporter Matt Bailey can be reached at news@collegian.com or on Twitter @matnes1999.