We've been made aware of a scam targeting international students by someone over the phone claiming to be from the Home Office.
The caller is very professional and persistent. The phone number shows up as 'Home Office - Customer Services' and the number matches the number on the Government website. The student is informed that they failed to fill in some paperwork correctly when they last entered the UK meaning they are now required to pay a fine or face immediate deportation from the UK and a subsequent ten year ban.
The terminology used is accurate, and the caller had the student's name and nationality. The fine payable starts at £1,500, rising quickly to £6,500.
The student is advised not to drop the call at any point or the Home Office will assume they are implicit in criminal activity and not cooperating.
Please note that the Home Office will never ask for personal information over the phone, or demand any money.