North Fulton County

Parents, beware! Crooks could be selling you fake SAT, ACT prep materials

ALPHARETTA, Ga. — It’s once again time for high school students to cram for their college entrance exams, including the SAT and the ACT.

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It’s also a ripe opportunity for con artists claiming to sell study materials that can boost test scores.

“The parents are the target of this scam. They will get a call from an unsolicited number claiming to represent the College Board. They will say their student or child requested study materials at school, and they’re willing to get it to them but they have to put a deposit down,” said Georgia Better Business Bureau representative Taelore Hicks.

Hicks showed Channel 2′s Tom Regan their call center in Alpharetta.

The Georgia BBB has received nearly a half dozen complaints from parents victimized by the scam. What officials say is most disturbing is the crooks have specific information about their children.

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“It is a very believable scam because these scammers somehow have access to the student’s school information, first and last name, where they are taking the tests. They get the information from anywhere, the number one thing being social media. Be careful about what you’re posting on social media. They also get it from public records, things like that,” said Hicks.

Hicks says the caller typically asks the parents for a $250 credit card deposit but adds that the charge will be refunded if the test preparation material is returned within 30 days. The material is never sent, and the deposit is gone.

“We also found out that these kids never requested the materials,” said Hicks.

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Hicks says everyone should be wary of unsolicited callers seeking payment for an item or service. She adds before agreeing to anything, check the source of the organization, in this case, the College Board, which administers the tests.

“The College Board on their website released a warning because they know these things are coming around. They said they would never ask for money via the phone, and they are not going to call you. The College Board website has a list of resources they recommend, and they are free,” said Hicks.

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