BBB: Watch out for payment app scams

Posted at 9:22 AM, Oct 17, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-17 11:22:16-04
If you sell items online, Better Business Bureau has a warning. Be cautious when using payment apps.
The Council of BBB’s warns that some scammers are exploiting the popular money transfer app Venmo.
"Say you are selling a computer on Craigslist or another online service. You find an interested buyer, and he or she is ready to make the purchase. But rather than pay with cash, the buyer suggests sending money through Venmo. At first, everything seems fine. You get an alert from Venmo that the buyer sent the money, so you hand over the item. However, a few days pass, and you notice the funds never appear in your account. It turns out you've been scammed" explained BBB's Emily Valla.
Valla says transfers in Venmo take several days to process, even if it appears to have gone through. Scammers take advantage of this by setting up transactions and canceling them before they go through.
"By the time victims realize they’ve never received the money, the scammers are long gone," Valla said.
Valla says use Venmo to send money only to people you personally know and trust. Link Venmo 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," said Valla. 
BBB recommends to check your account to be sure that the money transferred. It takes a few days for Venmo payments to transfer. If you have any concerns that a payer didn't really send the money, be sure to check your account directly.
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