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More people turning to popular banking apps to avoid COVID-19 virus | Don’t Waste Your Money

Mark Fisher didn't want to handle paper money during the pandemic, so he switched to Cash App and was targeted by scammers looking to take advantage of this trend.

Don't want to deal with paper money and coins due to the risk of catching COVID-19? If so, a money transfer app may sound ideal if you know the risks.

Mark Fisher didn't want to handle paper money during the pandemic, so he switched to the Cash app, but when a recent payment to his storage unit failed to go through, he decided to call the money transfer company.

"I Googled some numbers, found some numbers online for Cash App," Fisher said.

He called what appeared to be Cash App customer service.

"They're asking me for some information,” he said. “I give them my name, stuff like that."

The agent told Fisher he needed to check his account.

"They are sending me these codes, through my phone, telling me to text them the codes back."

Suddenly, the agent hangs up and he notices $3,400 are missing from his account— almost his entire bank account gone in an instant!

"They drained the account," he said.

It turned out the number he Googled was a scam and not the real app customer service line.

Money transfer apps have become super popular during the pandemic because you don’t have to deal with human tellers, drive-up windows, ATMs or fees at your traditional bank.

However, they also don’t come with the same protections.

Consumer Reports says there are risks with all money transfer apps like Cash App, Zelle— and the biggest one— Venmo.

It warns if you send money to the wrong person, it is gone forever. It says beware of calls and e-mails from the apps: they are often scams. And be very careful Googling for customer service.

Damon Lander said his Zelle account was drained by a phone scammer last year.

Fisher just wishes the apps had some sort of fraud protection built in

"I've never sent anyone $3,400 on my card. That's all I had!" He said.

After we contacted the Cash App's fraud department, the company agreed to refund Fisher’s lost money.

But be very careful Googling for customer service, so you don’t waste your money. 

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Don't Waste Your Money" is a registered trademark of Scripps Media, Inc. ("Scripps").

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