BBB: Cash App users scammed out of thousands of dollars after calling fake customer service number
A scammer disguised as a Cash App customer support person has allegedly stolen thousands of dollars from customers, the Better Business Bureau announced in a news release.
Victims of the scam who utilize the app went online in search of a customer support phone number for Cash App and the “representative” on the other end of the line requested login information in order to “further assess the problem,” according to the BBB.
The “representative” would then tell customers that they would be transferring funds to a “dummy account” and back again to purportedly determine why the customer is having issues accessing their own funds.
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Customers would find out later that the scammer was actually transferring funds into their own accounts with no intention of returning them, according to the BBB.
Cash App does not offer customer service via the telephone — only via email or through the app, the BBB said. If a consumer does call the official number provided by the company (1-855-351-2274), they will hear a recording telling consumers to seek service via email or their app.
“To ensure we can assist every Cash App Customer as quickly as possible, we primarily support this product via email. We’re working hard to increase Cash App support via other channels and make it even easier for customers to get real-time help with urgent issues,” according to a statement given to the BBB from Cash App.
So far, customers impacted by the scam are concentrated in the eastern Michigan area, the BBB’s news release said.
One Michigan user reported calling a number they found by searching “Cash App Customer Service” on Google and was convinced by the “representative” to send $335.00 to a random account that the scammer claimed was dummy account.
Another Michigan resident said that after calling a number they found on Google, the “representative” convinced them to download an additional app that allowed the “representative” to access to their phone screen. Once the consumer did that, they watched as the scammer changed all of their account details and sent their money to another account.
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“When looking for customer support for any website, it is best to go directly to the source, so in this case to the app itself,” said Melanie Duquesnel, president & CEO of Better Business Bureau Serving Eastern Michigan & the Upper Peninsula. “While our first instinct is to do an internet search, it may not always provide the most accurate information. If there is no customer service phone number on the app, chances are they don’t provide customer service over the phone.”
Despite the reported incidents being in a concentrated area, consumers should always be wary when transferring money.
Here are some tips from the BBB to avoid being scammed while using money-transferring apps:
- Use money transfer with friends: Protect yourself from scams by only using money transfer apps for their intended purpose -- sending money to people you personally know.
- Enable additional security settings: Check your account settings to see if you can turn on additional security measures, such as multi-factor authentication, requiring a PIN, or using fingerprint recognition like Touch ID.
- Link your money transfer app to a credit card. As with many other purchases, using a credit card will help protect you if you don't get the goods or services you paid for. Linking to a debit card or directly to your bank account does not give you that added protection.
- Use a password on your phone. If you lose your phone - or it's stolen - be sure criminals can't access your payment apps. Secure your phone by choosing a strong password or using the biometric security devices available on many smartphones.
- Check your account to be sure that the money transferred: If you do use a peer-to-peer payment app to sell something, be aware that it takes a few days for some payments to transfer. Be sure that the money transfers before you send the goods. If you have any concerns that a payer didn't really send the money, be sure to check your account directly.