JONESBORO, Ark. (September 27, 2017) – After an investigation conducted by the A-State Treasurer’s Office and Information Technology Department, Arkansas State University is recommending that all students check their online accounts to verify the bank accounts attached to their logins.
Recently, five students were discovered to have had attempts to utilize the link to direct deposits within their student accounts to redirect deposits. After two students reported missing deposits, the A-State Treasurer’s Office learned that three other students who had attempts on their accounts. Of the five, three have lost funds and are in the process of working with law enforcement to investigate this matter. The attempt on the two others failed.
“This is a very unfortunate incident, and we are actively assisting the affected students in recovery of the funds that were wrongfully taken,” Vice Chancellor for Finance Dr. Len Frey said.
Phishing emails are believed to be the source of the redirection of money, and it is for this reason that the university recommends students check their account immediately. As a general security precaution, the A-State IT Department also recommends students reset their account passwords.
“Everything appears consistent with an email-based phishing scheme that enticed the students to give out their A-State login and password,” Chief Information Officer Henry Torres said. “We are asking everyone to check as a precaution and to see if we have any other students who fell victim to the scheme. Even if you do not have direct deposit set up, check to make sure there isn’t a fraudulent account attached.”
Specifically, students should check the A-State Payment System, or myBill, link via MyCampus to determine there isn’t a fraudulent account attached. Additional instructions are attached to this email message and are posted also inside the MyCampus landing page.
As a policy, Arkansas State University will never ask for student login and passwords through email. This should be the first indicator of a false attempt to gain access to student accounts.
Part of asking students to look into their accounts is to aid with the investigation of the five students and to see if any other students may have fallen victim to the same unlawful scheme.
If students have concerns or questions, they are asked to reach out directly to the Treasurer’s Office at Arkansas State. They can email sasbillpayment@AState.edu or call 870-972-2285.