Financial Safety Tips: Using Direct Payment Apps

Sep 23, 2021 Safety & Security

Learn how to better protect your money while using the convenience of direct payment apps without the risk of being scammed.

A woman stands outside and texts on a cell phone.

Mobile payment apps that allow you to easily send and receive money to people you know are here to stay. In 2020, Venmo reported 52 million users and Cash App reported 30 million users, with other competitors seeing an increase in usage as well.

So these apps are easy to use, free or have minimal fees, and can help you send money to virtually anyone, anywhere. What’s the catch? Scammers are finding new ways to target users.

Keep reading for tips on how to keep your money safe while using direct payment apps.

Only Transfer Money To People You Know

While direct payment apps are convenient, it’s an easy way for scammers to take your money then disappear. Scammers can be persistent in asking you to send a money. Be wary of romance, imposter, phishing, and sweepstakes scams. Only transfer money to people you know, and always verify the recipient’s username, email address, and phone number before sending money.

Mobile payment apps will never ask a customer to send them money or share customer information outside of the app. Never send money to someone you haven’t met in person, claims they work at a government agency like the IRS, pressures you into paying immediately, or says a direct payment app is the only option.

Fraud Alerts

Stay alert and protected against fraudsters. Check out our blog for more resources on how you can avoid getting scammed.

Link Money Transfers To A Credit Card

Using a credit card can provide additional security if you don’t receive the goods or services paid for. This is because most credit cards offer zero liability policies – this states that the cardholder isn’t responsible for unauthorized charges and it’s up to the cardholder to report these charges. Once the charges are reported, the issuer will be able to resolve the incident without any money being directly stolen from a bank account. Check with your credit card provider about their policies and which one applies to your card.

Understand Terms And Conditions

While it’s easy to accept the terms and conditions when you first create an account, it’s recommended you research fraud and liability policies, be aware of how you can contact them, and read about experiences others have had. The terms and conditions act as a contract between a business and its customer, and can provide insights as to what happens in certain situations.

Never Send Money Using Public Wi-Fi

You can find free public Wi-Fi just about anywhere nowadays, but that doesn’t mean the connection is secure. With public Wi-Fi, you run the risk of weak encryption or rogue hotspots. Scammers then have access to sensitive information, including email accounts which can easily be used to obtain usernames and passwords for financial accounts.

While technology has advanced to help make our lives easier, scammers have also advanced in how they can take advantage of you. Question everything that seems suspicious and report any scams you think you have fallen victim to. The last thing anyone wants is lose their hard-earned money.

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