Post Content

2-girls-looking-at-phone

 

Have you heard of peer-to-peer payment apps such as Venmo and Cash App?  These money transferring apps sit on the phones of millions of Americans, and the numbers grow by the day.  Their convenience is hard to dismiss, since they function as a bank transaction watering hole, allowing for quick transactions between individuals despite what bank is used.  Unfortunately, this technology is not without its flaws, and we at OCABR want to make sure you take the necessary precautions to avoid financial risk.

Arguably the biggest drawback of these apps is the inability to retract any payment once it’s been sent out.  This means if you aren’t careful and accidentally send money to someone, it can be very difficult to get your money back.

If you erroneously send money to a friend, you can likely just ask them to send it back. However, if you’re sending money to someone you don’t know well, searching for their account isn’t easiest task. More often than not, you need to know an acquaintance’s specific account handle in order to find them (instead of searching by their name). To further complicate the situation, profile photos can often be misleading and unhelpful in confirming the identity of an account.  Profile photos often contain multiple people or are of bad quality, or an account may not have a picture at all.

To avoid these trip wires, OCABR suggests you:

  • Make your account name simple and as close to your actual name as possible, to ensure easy access to those who search for it.
  • Make your account private.
  • Choose a profile picture that is easily seen and identifiable.
  • When making a peer-to-peer payment, confirm the account is that of your intended recipient.
    • Ask for their contact, so the account is easier to find.
    • Ask them to write down the correct account.
    • Perform the transaction in prson if possible.
  • Use the decline and block features when available.
  • Educate yourself on common scams.

If you have additional questions, contact the Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation by calling our Consumer Hotline at (617) 973-8787, or toll-free in MA at (888) 283-3757, Monday through Friday, from 9 am-4:30 pm. Follow the Office on Facebook and Twitter, @Mass_Consumer. The Baker-Polito Administration’s Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation along with its five agencies work together to achieve two goals: to protect and empower consumers through advocacy and education, and to ensure a fair playing field for Massachusetts businesses. The Office also oversees the state’s vehicular and customized wheelchair Lemon Laws and Arbitration Programs, Data Breach reporting, Home Improvement Contractor Programs and the MA Do Not Call Registry.

Written By:

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Recent Posts

America Saves Week 2020 posted on Feb 24

America Saves Week 2020

It’s America Saves Week! Since 2007 America Saves Week has been an annual celebration as well as a call to action for consumers to commit to saving successfully. America Saves connects thousands of government, non-profit and corporate institutions to communities and consumers who take the   …Continue Reading America Saves Week 2020

Home Improvements That You Can Do in the Winter posted on Feb 19

Home Improvements That You Can Do in the Winter

Are you thinking about starting home improvement projects, but would rather wait for the spring or summer months? While hiring contractors and beginning work on such projects seem more like tasks for warmer weather, the winter may be an excellent time to assess the state   …Continue Reading Home Improvements That You Can Do in the Winter

Precautions to Take When You Encounter a Romance Scam posted on Feb 10

Precautions to Take When You Encounter a Romance Scam

Every year on February 14th, Valentine’s Day encourages trading gifts, purchasing roses, and special romantic evenings with your partner. It could be the day your sweetheart looks forward to the most in February. Though it may be the most romantic day of the year, you   …Continue Reading Precautions to Take When You Encounter a Romance Scam