Can You Get Scammed on Venmo? Understanding the Risks and Precautions

Can You Get Scammed on Venmo?

More and more users are turning to Venmo, a digital payment app owned by PayPal, to quickly and easily pay friends and family members. However, with the convenience of Venmo, there comes the risk of scams. Scammers are taking advantage of the platform, leaving users vulnerable.

This article outlines the different types of Venmo scams, how to protect yourself while using Venmo, and what to do if you’ve fallen victim to a scam.

5 Common Venmo Scams to Watch Out For

Scammers are constantly looking for new ways to deceive Venmo users. Here are five common scams to watch out for:

1. Phishing Scams

Phishing scams are when scammers send a message, usually an email or text, pretending to be Venmo or PayPal. This message usually asks the user to click on a link or sign in to their account. The link leads to a fake website that looks identical to the Venmo or PayPal page. Once the user enters their login information, the scammer can access and steal their account.

Warning Signs: Look for spelling or grammar errors in the message, and hover over the link to see if it leads to the official Venmo website.

2. Overpayment Scams

Overpayment scams happen when a buyer pays more than the asking price for an item, usually through Venmo. The buyer then asks the seller to refund the extra amount. The seller refunds the extra amount, but the original payment was made with a stolen card, and the payment is later reversed. The seller is then out the item and the refund they issued.

Warning Signs: Be wary of buyers who offer overpayment or ask for a refund, and check to see if the buyer has a history of overpayment or suspicious behavior.

3. Purchase Scams

Purchase scams happen when a seller lists an item for sale on a platform like Craigslist. The buyer sends payment through Venmo and then never receives the item. In some cases, the seller even blocks the buyer.

Warning Signs: Be cautious of transactions with strangers, and only purchase from trusted sources. If possible, request to meet in person for the exchange.

4. Lottery Scams

Lottery scams are when scammers send a message claiming the user has won a lottery or promotion. However, to claim the prize, the user needs to pay a fee or provide personal information. Once the fee is paid or information is shared, the scammer disappears.

Warning Signs: Be wary of unsolicited messages from people and companies you don’t know and avoid clicking on suspicious links or sharing personal information.

5. Fake Charities

Scammers may create fake charities and ask for donations through Venmo. In reality, the money is being stolen and the user’s information compromised.

Warning Signs: Be cautious of requests from charities and take the time to research the organization before donating.

How to Protect Yourself from Venmo Scams

There are precautions users can take to stay safe while using Venmo:

1. Set Up Strong Passwords

Create a strong password for your Venmo account. Use a combination of letters, numbers, and symbols. Change your password regularly and avoid using the same password for multiple accounts.

2. Enable Security Features

Enable all available security features on your Venmo account. This includes two-factor authentication, which sends a code to your phone each time you log in, and a pin code to confirm transactions.

3. Double-Check Transactions

Double-check all transactions before confirming payment. Review the recipient’s information carefully to ensure it’s accurate. Always verify the seller’s and buyer’s identities and reputations before making a transaction.

What to Do If You’ve Been Scammed on Venmo

If you think you’ve been scammed on Venmo, take action right away:

1. Report Suspicious Activity

Contact the Venmo fraud team immediately to report the suspicious activity. You can reach them at 1-855-812-4430.

2. Dispute Transactions

If you notice a transaction that you don’t recognize, dispute the charge through the Venmo app as soon as possible.

3. Contact Your Bank

If you believe someone has gained access to your bank account through Venmo, contact your bank to secure your accounts.

Understanding Venmo Security: Risks and Precautions

Venmo has several security measures in place to protect users, but there are still some risks to be aware of:

1. Venmo User Error

User error is one of the biggest risks on Venmo. It’s important to review your transactions carefully before completing them, and avoid sharing sensitive information with strangers.

2. Loss or Theft of Device

If your device is lost or stolen, someone may be able to use your Venmo account. Always secure your device with a passcode or password, and log out of your Venmo account when not in use.

3. Data Breaches

Venmo has been gaining attention for data breaches. While Venmo has security measures in place to protect users, scammers can still gain access to user information.

Red Flags to Look for When Making a Venmo Transaction

Here are some red flags to look for when making a Venmo transaction:

1. Unsolicited Requests

Be wary of unsolicited messages or requests from strangers or charities, and never click on suspicious links or share personal information.

2. Lack of Communication

If the seller or buyer doesn’t communicate with you or is unresponsive, be cautious of the transaction.

Why Venmo Scams Are on the Rise and How to Stay Safe

Venmo scams are increasing in frequency and complexity. To stay safe:

1. Stay Vigilant

Be aware of the common scams and look for red flags when making transactions.

2. Educate Yourself

Stay informed about the latest Venmo scams and security measures.

3. Report Suspicious Activity

If you notice any suspicious activity, report it to Venmo immediately.

Real People’s Stories: How They Were Scammed on Venmo and What They Learned

“I fell for a phishing scam and lost access to my Venmo account for over a week. I learned to always double-check the sender’s information and look for spelling and grammar errors in messages.”

“Someone overpaid me for a used item I sold online. Before I realized it was a scam, I refunded the extra amount. I learned to be cautious of overpayment requests and only purchase items from trusted sources.”

“Someone created a fake charity and asked for donations through Venmo. I did not do my research and lost my donation. I learned to always research charities before donating.”


While Venmo provides a quick and easy way to send and receive money, there are risks involved. Scammers are becoming increasingly creative and sophisticated in their attempts to scam Venmo users. Staying vigilant, double-checking transactions, and utilizing security features will ultimately keep users safe. If you are ever suspicious of a Venmo transaction or feel you have been scammed, report it immediately to Venmo and your bank.

Webben Editor

Hello! I'm Webben, your guide to intriguing insights about our diverse world. I strive to share knowledge, ignite curiosity, and promote understanding across various fields. Join me on this enlightening journey as we explore and grow together.

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