According to the old saying, “no good deed goes unpunished” so unfortunately what happened recently to Lisa Williams who used Cash App to collect donations to help buy food for families in Detroit suffering financially during the Coronavirus pandemic should not be surprising. Cash App is a popular mobile payment system. Upon encountering a technical problem, Ms. Williams did what many of us would do which is to do a Google search to find a customer service telephone number. When she called the number she found in her Google search, she was told that she needed to transfer the funds in her account to an account provided by the customer service representative while the problem was being fixed. Unfortunately, Cash App does not have a customer service telephone number and the person she spoke with was a scammer who had managed to manipulate Google’s algorithms to get the first position in a search. Ms. Williams ended up losing the money in her account.
Clever scam artists, the only criminals we refer to as artists are increasingly setting up phony websites that appear to be for customer service or tech support of many of the companies with which we do business or purchasing telephone numbers that are a single digit off of the legitimate phone numbers for many companies’ tech support or customer support in order to take advantage of common consumer misdials.
Compounding the problem is the fact that many companies, particularly social media companies, do not provide a telephone number to call and speak to a real person about your problem. They only provide online support.
The best place to look for a telephone number for customer support or tech support is right on your bill or the legitimate website of the company. The Cash App website carries a specific warning, “Please note that there are currently no phone numbers that you can call to speak with Cash Support.” Even when you do call legitimate tech support or customer service telephone numbers take extra care to make sure that you are dialing correctly and not calling a clever scammer.
Among the social media services that do not provide tech support by phone are Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and Twitter. Here are links to tech support for those social media services:
For those of you receiving the Scam of the day through an email, I just want to remind you that if you want to see the ever increasing list of Coronavirus scams go to the first page of the http://www.scamicide.com website and click on the tab at the top of the page that indicates “Coronavirus Scams.” Scamicide was recently cited by the New York Times as one of three top sources for information about Coronavirus related scams.
If you are not a subscriber to Scamicide.com and would like to receive daily emails with the Scam of the day, all you need to do is to go to the bottom of the initial page of http://www.scamicide.com and click on the tab that states “Sign up for this blog.”