Applying for Financial Aid – Identifying Pitfalls

Family having picnic in park

Students and their families who are navigating the college financial aid process can also find themselves victims of identity fraud. The Federal Student Aid program, a division of the Department of Education, offers some advice on how to avoid fraud during this process. When applying for aid at the official Federal Student Aid Website (, students should never share personal information, including PIN numbers, outside the application process. The information shared with FAFSA® on the application is encrypted; however, students often apply for aid from outside lenders. It’s important to review the privacy policy of any organization before providing personal information. Filling out the FAFSA® is free. If a student is asked for a credit card during any part of the application process, they are not at the government’s official site.

Avoiding Scams

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