Immigration Scams

Beware of Scams

Imposter scams are on the rise. Imposters are individuals who pretend to be someone else (often a government agency or official) in order to obtain personal information or money. Scammers often target international students and scholars. If you get a phone call, text or email from someone claiming to be law enforcement (police, FBI, etc.), Immigration agent (ICE, DHS, USCIS, etc.), IRS (taxes), or any other U.S. or foreign government agency, contact be suspicious. NEVER send money or give out bank information to anyone who calls and asks for it.

If you have questions or need advice related to a scam issue, contact Legal Services for Students.

LSS is completely confidential and free to KU students. 

Contact: Legal Service for Students website  or 785-864-5665

Recognizing Scams:

  • If you receive a phone call and the caller threatens you with arrest in order for you to comply with their demands, this is likely a scam.
  • If you receive a phone call or email demanding money, this is likely a scam. Scammers often request cash, gift cards, wire transfers, venmo, etc. because these methods are harder to trace.
  • If you receive a phone call and the caller tells you that you can't tell anyone about your situation (your friends, family or university) because you are "under investigation", this is likely a scam.
  • If the websites, emails or other text provided by an individual asking for money contain misspellings and grammatical errors, this is likely a scam. Look closely at email addresses and logos to find anomalies.

Many people offer help with immigration services.  Unfortunately, not all are authorized to do so, and the wrong help can hurt you.  Sometimes people are just trying to get your personal information.  This is illegal and may be considered an immigration service scam.  USCIS/USDHS or other US government agencies do not call international visitors asking for money or request to meet at locations other than the agency itself.  Please be aware of this scam targeting international students/scholars and report any incidents immediately.  Remember reporting scams will not affect your immigration status or pending applications.  Also, many U.S. states allow you to report scams anonymously.

See examples of common scams.

Reporting Immigration Scams

  1. Report the incident to Legal Services for Student by emailing or by calling 785-864-5665
  2. If the incident occurred on campus, report the incident to KU Police Department by calling 785-864-5900
  3. If the incident occurred off campus, report the incident to the City of Lawrence Police Department at 785-832-7509
  4. Report the incident to US Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) by completing the online form at the USCIS Avoid Scams website.
  5. Report identity theft and get a recovery plan from the Federal Trade Commission website.