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As mobile wallets such as PayPal, Zelle, and Apple Pay grow more popular, the risk of encountering a scammer grows too. Unfortunately, it can be easy to fall victim to fraud while using digital payment services such as Venmo and Apple Cash because they do not protect consumers in the same way that credit cards and debit cards do. This is because these new mobile wallets are not under the same federal regulations as financial institutions are.

Scams to Watch Out For:

Canceled Payments

This scam occurs during the time it takes for a mobile wallet to process a transaction. A scammer may send a transaction and then cancel it before it is processed leaving the victim without any money from the promised payment.

False Payments

Some scammers will trick you into thinking you’ve been paid or that you’ve been paid too much. The scammer will then request that you send what you were selling and any extra cash you were paid by mistake. However, when you check your account – the money was never sent.

Fake Listings

Some scammers will “sell” you an expensive item, such as concert tickets, but only accept payment through a digital payment service such as Apple Cash. Once you send them the money, they disappear and leave you with no way to recover your funds.

Fake Emails

Some scammers pretend to be the digital payment service warning you that your account is going to be suspended. If you click the link in the email you will be prompted to enter your password. However, instead of verifying your information, you would be sending that information right to a scammer who can hack your account. As a rule of thumb, mobile wallet services will never ask you for your password information unless you are on the login in page.

How To Stay Safe When Using Mobile Wallets:

Only Transfer Money to Friends

In order to avoid scammers, only use digital payment services to send money to people that you personally know.

Link Your Mobile Wallet to a Credit Card

In case of a scam, using a credit card will help to protect you if you do not receive the items or services that you paid for.

Double Check You’ve Received Money

Before you send the item you are selling, make sure that the money has been transferred into your account. It normally takes a few days for a mobile wallet to process the payment.