Paypal is an online payment platform processor obtaining a website and a mobile phone app that facilitates or enables payment among individuals and businesses or vice versa. Millions of small and large retailers and sellers, virtually or in the real world, acknowledge and accept Paypal’s services. Paypal allows its customers to create an account with the help of linking their bank account, credit card details, or both. Paypal was an auxiliary of eBay, but eventually they spun off in a conflict into two segregated firms in 2015. In addition to online payments, PayPal also offers a debit card for payments, credit card readers for use in businesses, and lines of credit.
Paypal is considered the safest method of sending payments online, but despite the security, there are scammers that pave their way to steal victims’ money and sensitive information. But given the company’s resources, fraudsters are less likely to breach and steal from Paypal’s security system. However, due to this, scammers target the individual audience that uses Paypal. Paypal scams are carried out by sending forged emails consisting of malicious links or URLs claiming to be Paypal sites that ask you to enter personal and fiscal credentials. Scammers do not target people by filtering out the rich and poor, small and large businesses; they view this interface as “a large pool to scam victims.”
How does a Paypal scam work?
Paypal scams include several techniques and schemes that fraudsters use to claim to be industry experts who try to convince novice and innocent PayPal users to send them their money and private information or give them access to their accounts.
With over 300 million account holders currently, PayPal users are captivating and facile targets for scammers. In fact, scammers are most likely to cheat customers out of money by using PayPal.
While paypal scams comes in different dimensions, mentioned below are some significant ones:-
- Overpayment scams: Scammers overpay for an item “by accident,” which is often used as a stolen account, or employ hacking techniques to make it appear as if the money is in your bank account, and then ask for the difference back through a payment form that is fraudulent and non-reversible.
- Upfront-fee scams: The victim is promised a large sum of money that will be released after paying a scammer claiming to be a client a fee upfront.
- Phishing scams – It is a type of social engineering attack in which scammers impersonate a PayPal representative or other official to trick victims into sending money or unveiling sensitive information.
How to spot a Paypal scam?
- An authoritative correspondent confronting you with the tag “Dear User” can be an alleged Paypal scam. As legitimate officials will always acknowledge you with your registered name or business name on a website or application.
- An email regarding Paypal services that contains a long email ID or irrelevant domain name can be fraudulent. Trust only the emails that come from ‘paypal.com’ or the verified Paypal.com domain. Before clicking on the links provided, ensure and scrutinise the email ID to determine if it is legitimate, and cross-check the domain of the website before entering your sensitive information.
- PayPal officials asking for personal credentials such as ID and passwords, two-factor authorization (2FA) codes, or fiscal information can be scams. Paypal authorizations would never ask for these credentials unless it was an extreme emergency.
- Receiving an email via the PayPal domain with inappropriate spelling and grammatical errors can be an indication of a scam. As PayPal is a multi-billion dollar company, they won’t make a silly mistake as they have appointed professionals who write for them.
What are some preventive measures to Avoid a PayPal scam?
- Suppose you have sold a product on Paypal and your customer has accidentally sent you a larger amount than decided, and now they want a refund through a different payment processor. Refrain from accepting the offer, as scammers commonly use this technique, so the PayPal software cannot detect the fraud with the help of 2FA. For instance, if a buyer pays you extensively, conduct a fresh transaction instead of sending it on the same portal.
- When purchasing or selling products or services through PayPal, conceive to associate with verified buyers and sellers. However, finding a genuine buyer or seller is difficult, but if a person claims to be a buyer and provides excessive money for the product that isn’t worth it, it can be a scam, or if a person claims to send money after they receive the product, it can be a fraud. Avoid these offers and move on to other legitimate buyers.
- A person who provides you with an unsolicited link that directs to PayPal with a single touch can be suspicious. Do not click on the link immediately, even if it looks authorized. Instead, it is safe and secure to register yourself directly by going to a valid site or app that will provide you access to any important links.
- While receiving a product or service, always choose your own shipping method. Through this method, you can control delivery and won’t be tricked with counterfeit shipping labels or rerouting of packages via fraudsters.
- In online fraud, some scammers often try to get malware software on your computer. Refrain from downloading anything sent to you via an unsolicited email, text message, or anything; instead, use reliable antivirus software. Antivirus software can help you detect and protect against fraudulent scams and scammers.
PayPal is one of the most popular online payment services globally. It offers buyers and sellers an easy, convenient, and secure way to exchange money with anyone, or anywhere, in numerous currencies. On the other hand, Paypal scams have surged lately in the online fraud industry. Scammers have become more sophisticated in their methods of defrauding people without leaving any traces.The best way to protect yourself from this scam is by paying close attention to emails and links provided to you. Associate with reliable cybersecurity firms that monitor your passwords, personal information, and even your fiscal passwords for indications of fraud and help you to be vigilant before scammers do too much damage.