Many apps have been introduced into the mainstream with the help of the internet and smartphone use. Indeed, you don’t have to leave the comforts of your home to buy or carry out any financial transaction.
PayPal is one such application that has changed the way transactions are made in this digital world. Although there were many limitations at the time of its inception, it has since been upgraded, becoming more and more secure. It is one of the most successful applications and is popular with many around the world.
However, no matter how good the application is, there are bound to be loopholes that are exploited by scammers, and PayPal is no exception to such scams. There are several instances where a genuine person gets ripped off by scammers.
This brings us to the question…
What are scams involving PayPal?
As previously stated, PayPal is very popular among many people, resulting in a large number of financial transactions. It is generally utilized in e-commerce. Generally, scammers will impersonate a genuine buyer and purchase goods from the seller. These scammers dupe the sellers, who not only end up with the goods but also rip off the sellers by being paid by the seller from whom they purchased.
We have listed a few of these PayPal scams. And they are as follows:
Bogus PayPal emails
By pretending to be genuine buyers, scammers will purchase a product from the sellers. Scammers will contact the seller, stating that they have made the payment, and it will be kept on hold until the shipping tracking number is released.
Once the shipping tracking number has been released, scammers will notify PayPal authorities that their account has been compromised and someone else is making payments. The shipment reaches its destination, with scammers getting what they want free of charge.
Scam PayPal overpayment
Scammers will sometimes pay more than what is required for the product. They then contact the seller and say that they have overpaid them. The seller returns the surplus amount to the scammer.
Once the payment has been received, the scammer contacts PayPal authorities and complains that their account has been hacked and someone is misusing their account.
The PayPal authorities will reimburse the entire amount of the product that they did not buy in the first place. They even rip off what the seller pays as the surplus amount.
PayPal shipping address fraud
It is one of the more popular PayPal scams. Scammers will buy a product for a seller. Before the product is shipped by the seller, the scammer will provide a new delivery address, which is bogus.
Since the new address provided by the scammers is invalid, the shipment procedure would not be completed. After a few failed attempts, the scammer gives a valid address, and the product is sent to the scammer’s doorstep.
After receiving the shipment, the scammer will complain to the PayPal authorities that their account has been hacked and someone is purchasing things that they have no idea about.
Thus, the seller does not get the product back, and the payment is also lost.
PayPal phishing fraud
Phishing scams are known to target PayPal sellers. Scammers impersonate someone from PayPal and send an email stating that to reclaim funds, the seller’s confirmation is needed.
A link is provided in the email.
The link is a hoax and will direct the seller to a bogus site where the seller needs to type in the details that are mentioned. The data does not go to the PayPal database; instead, it goes to the scammer, who will then misuse it to pay or withdraw money from the account.
These scammers have now started to target any PayPal account. Even though this scam is popular, many do fall victim to such fraudulent activities every year.
Scam with Fake Gifts
Some sellers are glad to accept payment in the form of gifts. After receiving the payment for the product, it is then sent to the address provided by the buyers.
Several scammers will misuse this payment mode allowed by the seller. Scammers will pay these sellers in the form of gifts.
And once the shipment is sent to the address provided by the scammers, they will complain to the PayPal authorities regarding a piece of fake information about the account being hacked. Like most of these PayPal scams, in this scam, the payment is halted by the PayPal authorities once they notice that the account has been compromised.
Scammers take advantage of such a situation. They will either flood sellers by charging for campaigns they never requested or with bogus purchases from bad affiliates. The seller ends up paying for something that was not authorized by them. In addition to this, the sellers are required to pay commissions for sales that they never authorized in the first place.
Hacked account scams
Hackers will usually hack into a PayPal account through a phishing attack. Once the credentials are collected, they will use that account to scam other users. They may use that account to buy products, and once the product reaches its destination, the funds are removed from the hacked account. In the most likely event, PayPal will withdraw the funds after learning that the account has been compromised.
Steps to avoid falling for scams regarding PayPal
As a seller, you can take advantage of the Seller Protection Program and practice good cyber security to avoid falling for PayPal scams.
- It would be wise on your part to verify if the address provided is authentic or not. Avoid any attempts to redirect the shipment to a new address.
- Ensure the customer checks out the cart instead of paying directly.
- Ensure that the email address coming from PayPal client support is authentic.
- Avoid downloading any files or attachments from a suspicious-looking email.
- Verify that the money you intend to donate to a charity is legitimate.
- Be on alert for any buyer who keeps targeting you and has committed fraud in the past.
- Use spam filters on your email to block potential scammers.