can you get scammed on venmo

Can You Get Scammed on Venmo? Beware of 12 Common Venmo Attacks

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PUREVPNPrivacy & SecurityCan You Get Scammed on Venmo? Beware of 12 Common Venmo Attacks

You must have heard the expression “Just pay me on Venmo,” whether you’re purchasing something online or paying a buddy back. With the help of such an infamous payment app like Venmo, you may send money right away! Especially since cash transfers are now more convenient than ever thanks to payment applications such as PayPal or Zelle. 

But when it comes to your well-earned money, you can never be “too cautious.” Although Venmo uses many security methods to protect your data and money, some fraudsters can still set up schemes to steal your money. 

So, you need to spot a scam on Venmo from miles apart. Let’s learn about some common Venmo scams and what you can do to not only avoid them but report them for your future safety.

can you get scammed on venmo

What is Venmo, and how is it used?

Venmo is a peer-to-peer transfer app that you can use to send money to your friends and family. It can also be used for business payments as well. 

The Venmo app makes payments simple and quick, especially if the money is available in the recipient’s account. Plus, it is a fee-free app that does not charge for essential personal payments between friends. 

It is simple to use Venmo. The following section will explain how to create and use a Venmo account. 

  • Install Venmo from your App Store or Google Play Store.
  • Once installed, tap to open it.
  • You will be given two options: either a personal account or a business one. 
  • Click Sign up.
  • Add in your phone number.
  • A code is sent to your phone number. Enter it and click submit code.
  • Next, you have to add some information about your account.
  • Write your first name and last name. 
  • Then, create a username.
  • Enter in your email.
  • Lastly, set a password for your account.
  • Tick the checkbox to ensure you are eighteen years old.
  • Next, agree with the Venmo user agreement and privacy policy.
  • You will be given options to sync your phone and Facebook contacts. If you don’t want to, you can skip.
  • Then, you will have to set up your payment settings. If you set it to Friends, your payments will be visible to your friends, and if you put it to the public, they can be viewed by anyone. You can also set it to private.
  • Tap Pay or Request at the bottom of your screen to pay or request money.
  • Enter the username for sending or requesting money.
  • Next, enter the amount.
  • If you want to request money from the person, hit Request. If you are sending money, tap Pay.
  • You can also get yourself a Venmo card if you want. You can tap the crypto icon to buy cryptocurrency on your Venmo app.

What are Venmo Scams?

Can you get scammed on Venmo? Yes, scams while using Venmo are so widespread that many people have fallen for them. They come in various forms. A few are mentioned below.

Fake Deposit 

A fraudster sends you an email or text claiming you have received a certain amount in your Venmo account. Then, you are contacted by the scammer requesting you to return their money. 

The scammer disappears once you send them the funds, and your money is irretrievable. 

Phishing 

Usually, scammers try to buy the login credentials of Venmo users through dark websites. However, phishing is the classic method of tricking people into giving away their login credentials.

Scammers send an email that looks legitimate, notifying you that your account has been suspended. To recover it, you must log in immediately to avoid permanent suspension. 

Users click on the link sent by the scammer and add their login information. This information then gets sent to the scammer, who hacks your Venmo account.

Money Request 

Scammers pretend to be victims and reach out to you. The scammers in these frauds are usually someone you know who tries to gain your sympathy by telling an emotional story about how desperate they are for financial help. 

They promise to pay you back once their finances improve. Unfortunately, when you believe them and send money, they vanish. 

Is Venmo a safe money-transfer platform?

Venmo is generally considered a safe and reliable platform to utilize as it employs advanced encryption and other security measures. Yet, using the platform still carries some level of risk.

One major drawback of using Venmo is that digital payment platforms like Venmo handle your money like cash, in contrast to credit or debit cards, which provide financial protection for consumers in the event of fraud or theft. It is virtually impossible to recover the loss once the money has been passed to a con artist.

It’s also crucial to remember that Venmo is solely meant for personal usage; business-related transactions should not be conducted using this app. Venmo should only be used for transactions between people you know and trust, according to the Venmo user agreement.

Watch out for these 12 common Venmo scams

Pyramid scheme

In some cases, Venmo scammers attract innocent users by using words like “Earn money easily” or “Get your money double in 5 mins” and then scam them out of their money. Whether the request is from someone you know or a stranger, probably you won’t receive any money back.

Here’s what this scam looks like:

Source: Venmo help

Fake charity scam

A con artist may start a fake nonprofit and use Venmo to collect funds. But the money won’t be sent to charity instead the scammer will enjoy your well-meant money.

Here’s what this scam looks like:

Payment reversal scam

A scammer may send you a payment on Venmo and then reverse it, leaving you with no money and possibly a negative balance on your account. 

Smishing

Be wary of unsolicited emails or texts that appear to be Venmo notifications. Scammers could use a text message to trick you into visiting a fake link. You might be tempted by the offer of free money in exchange for completing a brief survey or another incentive.

The link will send you to a phony Venmo login page that steals your user data and financial information when you attempt to log in, even though the text may appear to come from a legitimate Venmo account, according to Gordon.

Here’s what this scam looks like:

Source: Venmo help

Fake payment proof

A scam artist could offer the goods or services without receiving payment in full. When they haven’t made a payment, they may send images of forged emails that appear to show that they have paid you on Venmo.

Another typical ruse is to claim they’ve paid you money, but it won’t show up in your Venmo account until you send the item and upload the shipping documents. Nevertheless, this is a scam and not a feature offered by Venmo.

Here’s what this scam looks like:

Source: Venmo help

Cashback or reward scam

A scammer may offer to send you money through Venmo if you purchase an item for them and receive a cashback reward. Once you send the money, the scammer disappears and the cashback never arrives.

Here’s what this scam looks like:

Source: Venmo help

Impersonating a Venmo care representative

When attempting to log into your account, the scammer can run into Venmo’s multi-factor authentication process. A code given to the phone number listed on the Venmo account must be entered throughout this process. Next, they will call you pretending to be from Venmo and want the code from you.

Other frequent versions include claiming to be from Venmo and requesting that you sign into the account they made for you or requesting that you send money to another Venmo account.

Here’s what this scam sounds like:

“Good morning, Sir. John here with Venmo Support. We have noticed some recent transactions on your account that appear to be unauthorized. Before we get started, I need to confirm that I am speaking with the owner of the account. I have just sent a verification code to your phone. For authentication purposes, can you please read me that code?” 

Fake profile scam

A fraudster may create a fake username and profile image to look like someone you know. The fraudster will either transfer money and then ask for it back using information from the public feed, or they will ask people who have done business with your friend in the past for money. Frequently, the circumstance will seem weird and will point to a pressing concern.

Here’s what this scam looks like:

Source: Venmo help

Ticket scam

A fraudster may attempt to get you to pay them first (either the entire or partial amount) while you’re trying to use Venmo to purchase something and then fail to deliver what they had promised.

Items that are uncommon, well-liked, and difficult to locate are especially prone to this (like gaming consoles, shoes, concert tickets, mobile devices, and more). To trick you into believing they have sent the goods when they haven’t, a con artist may provide false tracking information or screenshots.

Here’s what this scam looks like:

Source: Venmo help

Catfishing scam

Online scam artists could contact you using a fake profile and image.

Once they’ve earned your trust, they could use emotional blackmail to coerce you into paying them money.

For them to go to see you, they can demand money for bus or airline tickets, hotel accommodations, or other costs. Now and again they might ask for money in exchange for products, services, or a chance to invest.

Here’s what this scam looks like:

Source: Venmo help

Bogus paper checks

A scammer may ask you to send them money via Venmo in exchange for a check they’ve sent you.

When you cash a check at your bank, it usually clears, but if it bounces later, you’ll have to pay your bank back.

Here’s what this scam looks like:

Source: Venmo help

Rental scam

Using Venmo, a con artist may promise to rent a house but demands a deposit before the rental can be confirmed. The scammer then vanishes after you pay the amount.

One scenario is a new landlord that requests a Venmo rental deposit before giving you a tour or handing you necessary documents (such as a lease) and keys and once you pay, they’ll disappear into thin air with your money.

How to avoid getting scammed on Venmo

Here are some pointers for avoiding Venmo fraud:

Verify the recipient

Make sure to confirm the recipient’s identification before giving money using Venmo. You may achieve this by looking at their profile details, including their name and profile photo, and making sure their Venmo account is verified.

Only send money to trusted people

It’s crucial to send money only to people you know and trust. Sending money to strangers or people you don’t know well is never a good idea, especially if the transaction is for a good or service.

Beware of demands for overpayment

Requests for overpayment should be avoided as they may be classic fraud. In certain cases, con artists will ask for more money than was originally agreed upon and then ask you to transfer the extra money back to them.

Employ Venmo’s “request money” feature 

Use the “request money” feature for requesting your customers to send the money instead of transferring straight to you if you’re selling a good or service. In the event of a disagreement, this will serve as a record of the transaction and safeguard both parties.

Activate two-factor authentication 

To increase security, turn on two-factor authentication for your Venmo account. Before entering into your account or sending money, you will need to input a code that was provided to your phone or email.

Know the official handles of Venmo

Never submit your Venmo login details anywhere other than on Venmo.com and the Venmo app. The Twitter handles for Venmo are @Venmo and @VenmoSupport. On Facebook, it is @Venmo, and on Instagram, it is @Venmo. Only emails that end in “venmo.com” will be sent to you by Venmo.

Beware of fake Venmo agents and support

Never give anyone your Venmo verification code that was received on your phone. Under no circumstances will a Venmo agent ask you for this code. Never will Venmo request remote access to your device or prompt you to install a third-party app. 

Never assume that Venmo will open an account for you, transfer funds from your account to another user’s account on a different payment system, or “verify” your account while requesting payment in return.

Only deal with Venmo-approved business accounts

If you need to buy an item on Venmo, make sure you do it from a Venmo-marked business account to avoid getting scammed by fake accounts. Also, never exchange a check for a payment on Venmo and avoid getting caught in pyramid schemes that seem too good to be true.

Comply with Venmo’s user agreement when trading

Only when it is permitted by Venmo’s User Agreement should you use it to purchase or sell goods or services. Be cautious and never lend money to someone you don’t know.

Don’t get fooled by accidental payments

If you have accidentally received a payment from someone asking you to send it back, contact Venmo’s Support team. Also, block the other user to prevent further interactions.

Employ a trustworthy VPN service for additional security

Mask your identity using a reliable VPN service like PureVPN that provides high-grade encryption to ensure your online activities remain anonymous and scammers don’t gain your information to con you into believing they are related to you or blackmail you into sending your hard-earned money.

You have been scammed! What to do next?

Report the scam

If you believe that you have been the victim of a Venmo scam, you should contact Venmo support right away. There are several ways to report this conduct in Venmo.

  • Send the email to phishing@venmo.com if it is a phishing scam.
  • Send screenshots of SMS messages or smishing to support@venmo.com.
  • Provide a snapshot of the phone number for any phony calls to support@venmo.com.

Safeguard your data

In addition to alerting Venmo to the action, you should safeguard your account and personal data. Following a scam, you should do this:

  • Make a password change.
  • Tell your bank what happened by getting in touch with them.
  • Analyze all Venmo transactions.
  • Any shady behavior should be reported to Venmo via the company’s contact form, online chat, or email (support@venmo.com).

Report scams involving business transactions

  • If the scam involves a business, you should notify the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) about the fraud.

Watch out for stolen identity

  • If scammers have access to your personal information, they could cause tremendous harm. 
  • Change your passwords for financial and personal information if your identity has also been compromised as a result of the fraud.
  • Think about hiding your identity by using a service like PureVPN for future protection.

Can you get your stolen money back?

The unfortunate truth is that you might not get your money back if you fall victim to a Venmo email scam, phone scam, or Venmo credit card scam. If you have been tricked through the company’s app, a refund is not a guarantee.

Yet, there are a few actions you might be able to take to make an effort to get your money back.

  • You can submit a claim and ask for a refund for certain purchases through the Venmo Purchasing program if you didn’t get what you ordered or it wasn’t what you expected. 
  • For this to work your payments must be made to verified businesses and merchants using a Venmo Debit Card.

To avoid falling victim to such scams and losing your money or worse your identity, you need to think about protecting your Venmo account better.

How to protect yourself from Venmo Scams with PureVPN

Unleash the power of PureVPN to safeguard your Venmo transactions and enjoy unparalleled benefits, including unmatched security, anonymity, and privacy protection.

Enhanced security

PureVPNs 256-bit encryption will secure your internet connection, making it more difficult for cybercriminals to intercept and steal your personal and financial information when using Venmo.

Privacy protection

PureVPN can help protect your privacy on Venmo by masking your IP address, making it more difficult for third parties to track your online activity. Its IP leak-proof feature will also ensure your IP address remains protected no matter what.

Military-grade security protocols

Using Venmo on public WiFi can be extremely risky if not protected by powerful built-in security features like WireGuard and IKEv2 provided by PureVPN.

Bottom line

The hard truth about using Venmo is that it is highly possible to get scammed on Venmo if you do not take the necessary precautions. False transactions, phishing attempts, and social engineering techniques are just a few of the various ways that Venmo scams can appear. 

It is crucial to only accept payments from reliable sources and to exercise caution when giving money to strangers because getting a refund on Venmo is extremely rare. Also, use a VPN service to avoid getting conned in the future. 

For any assistance regarding VPN, don’t hesitate to reach out via the LiveChat option.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it safe to accept Venmo from strangers?

No, it is not safe to accept Venmo payments from strangers. Venmo transactions should only be made with people you know and trust.

Is Venmo a safe way to receive money?

Venmo can be a safe way to receive money if used correctly. Venmo uses encryption to protect users’ financial information, and the app also offers features such as two-factor authentication and PIN protection.
But scams on Venmo are common, so you need to practice caution.

Is PayPal safer than Venmo?

PayPal and Venmo are both owned by the same parent company, PayPal Holdings Inc., and use similar security measures to protect user information. However, PayPal has been around longer and has a more extensive track record for security than Venmo.

Can you use Venmo internationally?

No, Venmo is currently only available for use within the United States, and transactions can only be made between users with U.S. phone numbers and bank accounts. Venmo does not support international transactions or foreign currencies.

Does Venmo refund money if scammed?

No, Venmo doesn’t refund your money back if you get scammed. It has a Purchase Protection Program to cover your purchases. Venmo will only refund your money if you get scammed within the protection program.
If you transfer funds to a person who turns out to be a scammer, Venmo will not be responsible for it. However, you must report the fraudulent activity so it can be investigated.

Is Venmo safe to use with strangers?

No, using Venmo with strangers is unsafe, as they can be scammers. Venmo has security features to authenticate users and keep transactions secure.
Despite the security features, scammers create fake accounts to deceive people. Therefore, you should use Venmo only with verified accounts.

Is it safe to give someone your Venmo username?

Sharing your username with anyone is unsafe as it can cause serious consequences. Scammers can use it to impersonate you and conduct fraudulent activities on your behalf. 
Furthermore, they can request money from your friends and family, pretending to be you. In extreme cases, they can deceive people and make unauthorized transactions.

author

Marrium Akhtar

date

December 20, 2023

time

7 months ago

Marrium is a dedicated digital Marketer and an SEO enthusiast who is skilled in cracking SEO codes. Other than work, she loves to stream, eat, and repeat.

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