Banking

Protect Your Money From Zelle Scams

The ease of moving funds via the peer-to-peer service also makes it popular among fraudsters.

Zelle is an electronic person-to-person payment service offered by major U.S. banks as an alternative to nonbank P2P services, like PayPal or Venmo. Zelle is convenient, safe, secure and usually free if you have a bank checking or savings account.

Those benefits combined with Zelle’s near-instant and irreversible transactions make the service popular not only with consumers, but also scammers, who’ve reportedly used Zelle to steal thousands of dollars from consumers’ bank accounts.

How Does Zelle Work?

Zelle is easy to use. To send funds, all you need to do is log in to your bank’s online banking service or mobile app, access the integrated Zelle features, and then enter the amount you want to transfer and the recipient’s U.S. phone number or email address.

Recipients who are enrolled in Zelle typically receive the funds within minutes. Recipients who aren’t enrolled receive a notification that explains how to collect the funds.

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More than 1,000 banks have incorporated Zelle into their online or app-based services. If your bank doesn’t have Zelle, you can use the service by downloading the Zelle app and enrolling with a debit card.

How Do Scammers Use Zelle?

A typical Zelle scam starts with an unexpected call, email or text message that appears to be from your bank or utility company.

Phone number “spoofing” may make these fraudulent calls appear to be legitimate on your phone’s caller ID.

When you contact the phone number provided to dispute the transaction, your call will seem to be connected to your bank or utility company. You’ll then be told to make a Zelle transfer, supposedly “to return the funds to your account.” This transaction – authorized by you – will in fact transfer your funds to the scammer. If your bank requires an authorization code to complete a transaction, the scammer will ask you for that code.

Zelle may also be used in other types of scams, such as fake romances, cryptocurrency cons, suspiciously cheap concert tickets or even supposed sales of purebred puppies.

How Do Scammers Use Zelle?

A typical Zelle scam starts with an unexpected call, email or text message that appears to be from your bank or utility company.

The bank message says your bank is trying to confirm that you made a Zelle transaction for a specified amount. The utility company message states that your utility hasn’t received your payment and will turn off your power within a short time unless you immediately send a payment via Zelle.

Phone number “spoofing” may make these fraudulent calls appear to be legitimate on your phone’s caller ID.

Zelle may also be used in other types of scams, such as fake romances, cryptocurrency cons, suspiciously cheap concert tickets or even supposed sales of purebred puppies.

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How Do Scammers Use Zelle?

A typical Zelle scam starts with an unexpected call, email or text message that appears to be from your bank or utility company.

The bank message says your bank is trying to confirm that you made a Zelle transaction for a specified amount. The utility company message states that your utility hasn’t received your payment and will turn off your power within a short time unless you immediately send a payment via Zelle.

Phone number “spoofing” may make these fraudulent calls appear to be legitimate on your phone’s caller ID.

When you contact the phone number provided to dispute the transaction, your call will seem to be connected to your bank or utility company. You’ll then be told to make a Zelle transfer, supposedly “to return the funds to your account.” This transaction – authorized by you – will in fact transfer your funds to the scammer. If your bank requires an authorization code to complete a transaction, the scammer will ask you for that code.

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Zelle may also be used in other types of scams, such as fake romances, cryptocurrency cons, suspiciously cheap concert tickets or even supposed sales of purebred puppies.

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How Do Scammers Use Zelle?

A typical Zelle scam starts with an unexpected call, email or text message that appears to be from your bank or utility company.

The bank message says your bank is trying to confirm that you made a Zelle transaction for a specified amount. The utility company message states that your utility hasn’t received your payment and will turn off your power within a short time unless you immediately send a payment via Zelle.

Phone number “spoofing” may make these fraudulent calls appear to be legitimate on your phone’s caller ID.

When you contact the phone number provided to dispute the transaction, your call will seem to be connected to your bank or utility company. You’ll then be told to make a Zelle transfer, supposedly “to return the funds to your account.” This transaction – authorized by you – will in fact transfer your funds to the scammer. If your bank requires an authorization code to complete a transaction, the scammer will ask you for that code.

Zelle may also be used in other types of scams, such as fake romances, cryptocurrency cons, suspiciously cheap concert tickets or even supposed sales of purebred puppies.

 

Source: usnews.com

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