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Higher One Partners with iDatafy to Fight Financial Aid Fraud

First Solution for Identifying Financial Aid Fraud Rings to be Offered to Higher Education

[New Haven, CT – December 20, 2012]Higher One, a leader in providing financial services and data analytics to over 1,250 college and university campuses across the U.S., announces it has entered into an exclusive agreement with iDatafy to bring solutions to higher education that proactively identify suspect student enrollments and applications through the use of advanced data analytics.

Individuals and fraud ring leaders, known as “Pell Runners” and “Straw Students,” are using various tactics such as identity theft to defraud and exploit the U.S. financial aid system that, according to the Department of Education, processes more than $145 billion in federal funding annually. The crime of financial aid fraud has escalated in recent years and incidents have been found to be most prevalent at community colleges and institutions that offer online courses and long-distance learning.

Higher One will offer iDatafy’s proprietary technology, the first contributory database designed to proactively identify and fight financial aid fraud. This database prevents institutions from becoming victims by auditing their existing student enrollments and new applications through the detailed analysis of student information and records, a process which is compliant with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). The patent pending technology has the ability not only to recognize patterns and abnormalities in data that reflects students who appear to share similar contact information, but also flags whether a particular student has habitually taken aid from a number of other institutions and then dropped out. Reports generated can help isolate suspect applicants and existing student enrollments that could pose a fraud risk for the institution.

Higher One Affirms Alignment with NACUBO Student Debit Card Guidelines

Higher One’s Principles and Actions Conform with Higher Ed Association’s Best Practices

[New Haven, CT – December 18, 2012] – Higher One, a leader in providing financial services and data analytics to over 1,250 college and university campuses across the U.S., affirmed its alignment with newly released guidelines for colleges and universities regarding debit card options for students. National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO), a membership organization representing more than 2,500 colleges, universities, and higher education service providers across the country and around the world, issued new guidelines that it developed following a survey of its member institutions in August.

“We applaud NACUBO for identifying guidelines that put students and their interests first when selecting a partner for disbursing financial aid and offering optional banking services,” said Miles Lasater, COO and co-founder of Higher One. “An objective voice has been long awaited and NACUBO is in an authoritative position to provide guidance to college and universities on campus disbursement and banking partnerships. Higher One is pleased to say its practices for financial aid disbursement and banking services conform to NACUBO’s identified best practices.”

Higher One Announces Cash Back Rewards Program

OneRewards Program Linked To Higher One Checking Accounts Leads the Way With up to 30% Cash Back on Purchases

[New Haven, CT – December 10, 2012]Higher One, a leader in providing financial services and data analytics to over 1,250 college and university campuses across the U.S., announced its new OneRewards cash back rewards program for its checking accounts, offered to college students enrolled at partner colleges and universities across the nation.

With OneRewards, Higher One checking accountholders can receive up to 30% cash back on everyday purchases such as retail and dining—both online and in-store. The OneRewards program will be providing access to over 100,000 merchants in the network including 21 of the 25 top U.S. retailers and 45 of the top 50 online retailers including top brands like Staples.com, BestBuy.com, Kohls.com, and Dell Home.

All current and new Higher One account holders are automatically eligible for and enrolled in the program at no cost. Actual cash back savings by merchants may vary over time. Log in or visit OneRewards.com to see the full list of online and in-store merchants in the OneRewards network.

“In the face of regulatory pressures, some large national banks are terminating their rewards programs. So, we took special care to bring back an improved OneRewards cash back program at this time,” said Miles Lasater, COO and Co-founder of Higher One. “For many of our customers who are enrolled in college and face real day-to-day financial challenges, deep discounts can really work to ease their burden of daily expenses incurred while pursuing a higher education.”

Accountholders are already realizing the benefits of Higher One’s OneRewards program:

“I think the program is simply amazing. Instead of adding to my bills and debt as a college student, cash back rewards helps me get money and save that money,” said Pamela Reed, OneAccount holder at Colorado Technical University.

Higher One Announces Money on My Mind Contest Winners

Ten students given $4,200 for money management advice for balancing life and coursework

[New Haven, CT – December 5, 2012]Higher One, a leader in providing financial services and data analytics to over 1,250 college and university campuses across the U.S., announced the top winning video submissions for its Money on My Mind contest. Higher One awarded $4,200 for the entries that shared the best advice for overcoming money management challenges while balancing school and non-academic life.

The top three cash prize winners, selected from over 150 entrants, attend Florida-based institutions: Michael Jones, a student at the University of Tampa won the grand prize of $2,000 for writing and performing a rap song of his financial challenges and solutions; first prize designation and $1,000 was awarded to Enamarie Montero, Miami Dade College; and second prize and $500 went to Mark Niedermann, who attends Valencia College.

“The selection committee was impressed with the creativity of Michael’s submission,” stated Mary Johnson, Financial Literacy and Consumer Advocacy expert at Higher One. “He made the topics of budgeting and prioritizing purchases both informative and entertaining, which is no small feat. In addition, the song’s catchy refrain was memorable enough to stay in our heads, so hopefully stuck with students that viewed it.”

Over 150 video submissions recounted how students triumphed over their personal financial challenges, and offered money management advice for new college students.

“Our goal with Money on My Mind is to help students engage and influence their peers positively on the topic of financial literacy directly via social media, and it has proven very effective,” said Johnson. “This year’s winners archived helpful and realistic advice that we look forward to sharing with students across the country.”

A partial list of winners and links to their winning submissions follow. Seven runners-up also received $100 each for their winning entries.

Grand prize and $2,000: Michael Jones, University of Tampa
First prize and $1,000: Enamarie Montero, Miami Dade College
Second price and $500: Mark Niedermann, Valencia College


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Before Higher One, our students only had one way to get their refunds, and that was by paper check. With Higher One processing refunds for us, it has allowed us to provide more options for our students without having to enter and store student banking information. We also no longer have to handle sorting, stuffing and mailing thousands of checks.Suzanne ClaggettUniversity of West Florida
Higher One’s experience with college students and their focus on serving colleges distinguishes Higher One from all other financial service providers. We really liked the fact that the community college customer base is expanding for Higher One.Carla Chance St. Louis Community College

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