There’s nothing accidental about these payments

There's nothing accidental about these payments

By Greg Collier

Last week, we posted about a scam that was affecting Venmo users. In that scam, scammers were posing as friends of the Venmo account holder and asking for money. But what do you do if a stranger sends you money that you didn’t ask for and does it through a payment app? The Better Business Bureau has issued a warning about an accidental payment scam that’s been affecting users of payment apps like Zelle, Venmo, Cash App and others.

In what’s being called the accidental payment or accidental deposit scam, the victim receives a substantial payment from someone they don’t know. That payment is then followed up by a message from the person who sent the money, saying they sent that payment accidentally, and could you please send it back? Whatever you do at this point, do not send the money back like you would a regular payment.

According to the BBB, the money that was sent to you was done using a stolen credit card. If you send the money back like a regular payment, you’ll be responsible for that money once it’s discovered the credit card is stolen.

Instead, you should tell the sender to cancel the payment, which can be done on most of the popular payment apps. If they refuse or try to pressure you into sending it back, it’s more than likely a scam. Also, don’t spend the money that you receive from the scammer, or you’ll be held liable for that money.

While many of the scammers are finding their victims randomly, others are finding them through social media. In order to prevent receiving phony payments like this, it’s best to keep your account names off of social media. While you may think it’s just a quick post between friends, it can be picked up quickly by scam artists.