HomeRegional StatewideState Warns of Scams Around Student Loan PaymentsState Warns of Scams Around Student Loan PaymentsTue, October 3, 2023 by Lucas Day SHARE NOW pxhere.com As federal student loan borrowers resume payments this month after a three-and-a-half year-long pause, the New York Department of State’s Division of Consumer Protection is providing tips to help federal student loan borrowers avoid scams. “The pause on federal student loan payments has officially ended, and many New Yorkers may be searching for new solutions to ease the burden of making their payments,” said Secretary of State Robert J. Rodriguez. “Unfortunately, potential scammers will also be using this time as an opportunity to take advantage of unsuspecting borrowers looking for relief or assistance. I’m reminding all student loan borrowers to be extra vigilant during this time and to read our tips to protect yourself from falling victim to a student loan scam.” What You Need to Know to Avoid Student Loan Forgiveness Scams: Don’t trust any person or program that promises you special access or guaranteed eligibility. You might be contacted by a scammer saying they will help you get your loan canceled or reduced for a fee. You will never need to pay for advice or help with your federal student loans or any deferment or income-based plans. All federal student loan borrowers can enroll directly and stay updated at no cost by contacting the U.S. Department of Education directly at StudentAid.gov. If you’re contacted unexpectedly with any of these offers, it’s a scam. Be wary of scammers who make false claims or say you have an incomplete application. If you have any questions about your application status, go directly to the U.S. Government federal student loan portal to access your account and confirm any details. To access the portal, go to StudentAid.gov. Stay updated with trusted information and sources. The U.S. Department of Education webpage provides borrowers with accurate and the most up-to-date information about the program. They also recommend logging in to your StudentAid.gov account to ensure your contact information is up to date and to sign up for alerts for when new information becomes available. Protect yourself from phishing scams. If you didn’t initiate the communication, don’t share your personal information. Keep your personal information, including your Federal Student Aid ID and social security number private. The U.S. Department of Education will never call or text you with a request of confidential information. Make sure you work only with the U.S. Department of Education and never reveal your personal information or account password to anyone. Genuine emails to borrowers will only come from [email protected]; [email protected] and [email protected]. If you encounter a scam, report it. Contact the official Federal Student Aid website to file a complaint, or contact the Federal Trade Commission. The U.S. Department of Education offers additional tips and resources You can also contact your loan servicing company or the Federal Student Aid Information Center (FSAIC) at 1-800-433-3243. Don’t forget to regularly monitor your credit report and score. As you begin the repayment process, stay one step ahead and make it a routine to check on your credit report and look for inconsistencies. Visit annualreport.com or call 1-877-322-8228 to get your free reports. Looking for help navigating your student loans? EDCAP (Education Debt Consumer Assistance Program) is an independent, New York State-funded, nonprofit program of the Community Service Society of New York (CSS) that helps New Yorkers navigate the student loan system. They offer free, one-on-one counseling with their student loan experts. To schedule an appointment call (888) 614-5004 or email them at [email protected] for more information. Get the top stories on your radio 24/7 on Finger Lakes News Radio 96.3 and 1590, WAUB and 106.3 and 1240, WGVA, and on Finger Lakes Country, 96.1/96.9/101.9/1570 WFLR.