Residents of Upstate New York have been reporting that they've been targeted by a wave of pretty convincing Venmo scams and some have innocently fallen for said scams.

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Venmo scammers are carrying out their deceitful activities through various methods and if you use the app, there are several things you need to know in order to protect yourself.

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Fake Venmo Payment Request

Scammers pose as friends, family members, or even strangers, sending Venmo payment requests for nonexistent bills or emergencies. These requests often create a sense of urgency, pressuring victims into making immediate payments without proper verification.

Venmo Phishing Messages

Another common scamming technique involves sending phishing messages via email, text, or Venmo's messaging feature. These messages look legitimate and ask users to update their account information or enter sensitive data on fraudulent websites, ultimately leading to identity theft or unauthorized access.

Selling Fraudulent Goods Online

Scammers exploit online marketplaces by posing as sellers and advertising attractive deals on popular items. Once buyers make the payment via Venmo, the scammers disappear without delivering the goods, leaving victims empty-handed.

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Verify Requests

Before making any payment on Venmo, ensure that the request is legitimate. Contact the person directly through a trusted and independent means of communication to confirm the payment request, especially if it seems unexpected or suspicious.

Be Wary of Links

Avoid clicking on links provided in text messages, emails, or even Venmo messages unless you can verify their authenticity. Scammers often use these links to direct users to fraudulent websites that imitate Venmo's interface and aim to steal login credentials or personal information.

Double-Check Seller Credentials

When purchasing items through online marketplaces, research to validate the seller's reputation. Look for reviews, ratings, and any signs of potential scams. Be skeptical of sellers asking for payment solely through Venmo or those offering deals that seem too good to be true.

Enhance Account Security

Strengthen your Venmo account security by enabling features like two-factor authentication. This will require a verification code alongside your login credentials, adding an extra layer of protection against unauthorized access.

Report Suspicious Activity

If you suspect any suspicious activity, unverified requests, or think you've become a victim to a Venmo scam, report it immediately to Venmo customer support. They have the resources to investigate and take appropriate action against fraudulent accounts or transactions.

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