Imagine going about your day, the regular ups and downs you go through, the tasks and responsibilities. Now imagine getting a call from your friend asking you “Hey, I’ll totally Venmo you for groceries.” Or “Why do you need $300 for groceries?” and having no idea what people were talking about. That’s exactly how Sydney F. felt when someone spoofed her username on Venmo and requested all her friends $300 commenting on the request with “I’m at the grocery store and didn’t bring my wallet, because I usually use apple pay, but the grocery store’s apple pay is broken. I’ll pay you back as soon as I get home.” To try and trick her friends into giving them money. This is one of many different types of scams that can arise from the app.
The app Venmo, known for its ease and reliability when sending money digitally, has relied heavily on social media for efforts to grow its following and user base. Venmo users on Instagram and Twitter are asked to follow Venmo’s account and repost their promotional gif with their Venmo account name for a chance to win $500 out of a whopping $200,000.
Sounds easy enough, right? Not exactly.
By participating in this contest, users are exposing their Venmo account handles, and in turn, are getting their accounts spoofed and hacked.
To learn more about the types of Venmo scams people seeing, click here.
In a situation like this, there are a few things to consider and multiple ways to approach it so that you and those around you can come out of this unscathed.
- Before doing anything, set up a Face/fingerprint ID & PIN to help secure your transactions. This will provide an extra layer of security so that people won’t be able to send money to themselves if they have access to your account.
- An easy second step is to set up two-factor authentication on your account as well. So only the user with access to both forms of communication could enter the account.
- Change your privacy setting so that your transactions are private. This will make sure people cannot see your username or your activity if they are not your friend.
- If you are asked to send money to someone, always make sure you talk to them in person or on the phone before sending it to them. Be able to authenticate who you are sending money to in case of an account breach.
- If someone has hacked your account one option to get them off your account is to change your password. This will automatically sign out all other devices and require them to sign back in.
- TELL EVERYONE that your account was hacked. It doesn’t matter if it’s your ex from high school, these hackers will also ask them for money, they don’t care how awkward it is between you two.
- Alert the customer service center of the application so they can do a comprehensive investigation, improve the security of their service, and maybe even reimburse you for some of the losses you’ve incurred.
- Lastly, whether you are a victim or not, repost and share these stories and tips with everyone you know. Knowing to be apprehensive about these schemes is 90% of the protection, technological means only account for 10% of cyber security, YOU ARE THE FRONTLINE OF SECURITY.
To learn more ways to protect yourself online, visit our blog at https://blog.blacklineit.com/