The California Community Colleges system is investigating potentially widespread fraud involving fake “bot students” enrolled in active courses in what officials suspect is a scam to obtain financial aid or COVID-19 relief grants.
The 116-campus system is beefing up internal reporting and security measures after finding that 20% of recent traffic on its main portal for online applications was “malicious and bot-related,” according to a memo issued Monday by Valerie Lundy-Wagner, interim vice chancellor of digital innovation and infrastructure.
Nearly 15% of that traffic was caught by new software called Imperva Advanced Bot Detection, which was installed last month, and the matter remained of “grave concern,” she said. The memo follows a previous warning that Lundy-Wagner issued in June.
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