Gift Card Scammers Find New Home in Cash App Giveaways

Gift Card Scammers Find New Home in Cash App Giveaways

It Goes Down In The DM

When users are asked to DM these Cash App scammers, they’ll be told that there’s one more required step before they receive the giveaway prize.

The Cash App scammers claim to be “customer service representatives” at Cash App and talk about how they can “flip transactions from my system.” They then talk about example dollar amounts that can be flipped to higher amounts, starting at the lower end (e.g. $50), all the way up to a larger amount (e.g. $100). They also claim they have proof. If pressed with further questions, the scammers will stop responding.

If a user agrees to the con, they’ll be asked to send the initial payment to the Cash App scammer. The reality is that the Cash App scammer will receive the payment and never respond back to the user after they’ve received the initial payment, leaving the user out in the cold. However, I speculate that in some instances, certain Cash App scammers may offer a smaller “flip” in order to gain the trust of the user first. For example, they may actually deliver on a promise to turn $2 into $20 to prove the “flip” works. It is a minimal investment from the Cash App scammer’s perspective in order to earn the trust of the victim. From there, the scammer will ask the user to try sending them a higher dollar amount, from $50 to $100. This type of trust-gaining flip is likely fairly rare; in my estimation, the majority of users will send a certain dollar amount to the Cash App scammer, never to hear from them again.

In other cases I’ve observed, some Cash App scammers will ask the recipient to gain their trust by asking them to go to a website or a brick-and-mortar store and purchase a prepaid “gift” card.

In a 2018 article from the United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the agency observed a staggering 270 percent increase in the demand for gift card payments from scammers since 2015. Therefore, it is not surprising to see remnants of this trickle into the world of Cash App scams, because it’s a lot harder to trace back theft of funds from a gift card than it is to identify a Cash App scammer using the platform with an associated $cashtag and telephone number.

Abuse of Referral Bonuses

Besides gift cards, another Cash App scam involves the promise of a “blessing” in exchange for the user signing up to cashback services, like Dosh Cash, and price drop monitoring service Waldo, neither of which is affiliated with Square’s Cash App.

Dosh Cash and Waldo incentivize referrals, offering $5 per referral for users who sign up using a referral link or code and link a credit or debit card. As seen in the tweets above, one Cash App scammer convinced a user to sign up to both services. In the DMs, you’ll see this user say “I did my part you need to do yours” and “You told me to do that with the last online installment IN link and you still didn’t cash app me.” The Cash App scammer this person has engaged with has been operating this particular scheme since at least 2018.

Incoming Requests from Cash App Scammers

Typically on #CashAppFriday, Cash App will randomly send money to users replying to its tweets or Instagram posts. Users lucky enough to be recipients of a real “Cash App Blessing” will sometimes share screenshots and thank the company.

The screenshot above shows a genuine interaction from a user who actually received $5 from the real Cash App account. You can tell the requests are coming from the real Cash App account because the $cashtag here is $cashapp.

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