West Mercia Police are warning students heading off to university or college that they may find themselves susceptible to scams.
In previous years, fraudsters have targeted learners with student loan dupes, promises of tax refunds, fraudulent job opportunities or fake rental properties.
Phishing scams claiming to come from the Student Loans Company or HMRC often target first year students to dupe them into handing over personal information in order to steal their identity.
Scammers will tell the victim their details are out of date or incomplete, or that they are eligible for tax refunds. Fake web-links will request students input their personal details, allowing criminals to harvest personal information.
Additionally, police warn, unsolicited job offers or opportunities to make easy money should always be treated with scepticism. Fraudsters will pretend to offer legitimate jobs or get rich quick schemes via emails and often target vulnerable groups such as students.
Criminals recruit innocent people to work as 'money mules', transferring stolen money overseas using the victims bank account.
Police say rental fraud often targets students looking for university accommodation. Would-be tenants are tricked into paying an upfront free on a property that doesn't exist or has already been rented.
If you think you’ve been a victim of fraud, contact your bank immediately and report it to Action Fraud online at actionfraud.police.uk or by calling 0300 123 2040.