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Can you enroll in college with a fake name?

Wondering about this for a book, how in depth do colleges look into your personal information? I know the simple answer would be that this would be impossible to pull off, but having worked around various college offices, it seems they are understaffed and overworked to the point where someone could theoretically pass through the cracks.

If so, would they need to generate only a valid SS#, or would they need a fake ID for said SS#? Could they simply use a valid SS# and a name that doesn't match, or would this be noticed in the system?

I'm hoping someone with professional knowledge in either social security, private investigation, or experience in college admissions will assist me in answering this. Thanks!

3 Answers

  • CoachT
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Never thought about it but:

    No college I've ever attended has ever asked to see my driver's license or social security card. In fact, they've not asked for much except my vaccination record (a shot record is easy enough to forge) and my tax return for financial aid verification.

    Your HS transcript would probably have an SSN on it and a name - you'd have to forge that one too. It might be a little harder to pull off but not impossible if creative. It has to be sent official - so you'd need an inside at a high school (or create a fake one that the college falls for). I don't know how closely they look at such things.

    You'd have to stay out of the federal system altogether - that's where a match would happen. No federal financial aid.

    Keeping in mind, I offer this for a fictional character in a book. He would go to a fictional prison when caught. We real people have to go to real prisons when caught - and this one would probably get caught because of the whole post-911 security thing.

    Your character would have a diploma with the wrong name on it when he was done - his interest in being at college would have to be something other than a diploma (someone committing a fraud could just buy one online or lie about having it) such as getting next to someone or hiding.

    If he wasn't enrolling as a full degree seeking student (say he was attending for "a few courses" as a transient student) they'd check even less of his paperwork. Maybe none.

    Understand: using a fake SSN to commit a fraud like this is a serious offense and the nice people from Homeland Security would want to talk to him - in jail. They're going to assume his motivation is highly dangerous. Your character could probably come up with a better idea on how to accomplish his objective and stay out of jail.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Obama went to college under the name Barry Soetoro and ended up becoming an awful president.

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  • Meg
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    I had to provide a copy of my birth certificate along with my vaccination history. Theoretically if you can fake all that stuff then yes but I doubt it. You will need a vaccination history from childhood and from elementary school.

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