Did You Get Scammed on Cash App? Don’t Panic! Do This
Jacqueline Sanders was in a hurry to activate her new Cash App debit card — so she Googled the phone number for Cash App customer support [*]. When the person she was speaking with told her to download an app called AnyDesk to her phone, Sanders didn’t think twice. But that’s when her world turned upside down.
Sanders wasn’t speaking to a real Cash App support representative. Instead, she’d reached a scammer posing as a Cash App employee.
The software she had downloaded had given the fraudster total control of her phone. Within minutes, Sanders watched the scammer take over her family’s bank accounts and transfer out all of their savings as Bitcoin.
Cash app scams like these are running rampant. And if you’ve been scammed on Cash App, you need to act quickly.
Here’s what to do and how you can try to get your money back from a Cash App scammer.
How Do Cash App Scams Work? Can You Get Your Money Back?
Cash App offers a quick and convenient way to send and receive money. But that convenience comes with a cost.
Unlike your bank account, money sent via Cash App (or other mobile payment apps such as Zelle and Venmo) isn’t FDIC insured. This means that you don’t have access to any buyer protection programs.
If you accidentally send money to a scammer or get tricked into giving up access to your Cash App account, it’s essentially like losing a wallet full of cash.
Here are just a few of the most common Cash App scams that you should be aware of:
- Fraudulent Cash App customer support websites and phone numbers. Fraudsters pretend to be Cash App employees and then convince you to give up your password or download software that gives them remote access to your phone or computer.
- “Cash flipping” scams that promise huge returns. Scammers post on social media and promise huge returns on cryptocurrencies or other investments — for a small initial investment via Cash App. But any money you send goes straight to the scammer. Also, beware of any supposed Cash App giveaways (other than the official “Cash App Friday” posts).
- Fake Cash App login pages sent in phishing emails and texts. Scammers send emails or texts claiming there’s a payment waiting for you in Cash App. But when you click on the link, you’re taken to a site that steals your username and password.
- Random people “accidentally” sending you money over Cash App. Con artists send you money over Cash App and then ask you to refund it to a different account. (Any request for a refund is almost always a major red flag). But the original payment was sent using a stolen credit card. When the owner files a chargeback complaint, the amount is taken out of your account.
- Scammers requesting Cash App payments on online marketplaces. Scammers set up fake listings for hard-to-find items on Facebook Marketplace or other online platforms. They request payment via Cash App and then disappear after you send it.
- Fake bank fraud alerts that lead to Cash App scams. Fraudsters pretend to be representatives from your bank and claim your account is compromised. They then convince you to transfer your money to a “secure” account using Cash App. But any money you send will go straight to the scammers.
So, what happens if you get scammed on Cash App?
According to the Better Business Bureau (BBB), Cash App was not even among the payment methods where people were able to recover their funds in 2022 [*].
But for the best chances of recovering your lost money, there are steps that you can take.
How To Get Your Money Back If You Were Scammed on Cash App
- Request a refund from the recipient
- Try to cancel the payment
- Dispute the transaction on Cash App
- File a police report
- Inform your bank of the fraud
- Report the transaction as a scam
- Report and block the Cash App scammer
- File a complaint with the FTC
- Freeze your credit
- Consider signing up for a digital security solution
If you’ve been scammed on Cash App or if you sent money to the wrong person, here’s what you can do to try and get your money back:
1. Request a refund from the recipient
Typically, there are three situations in which you’ll be able to successfully get a refund for the amount you sent:
- The recipient agrees to return the money that you sent them.
- You manage to cancel the payment before it’s finalized.
- You’re able to successfully dispute the payment via Cash App support.
Because Cash App is a peer-to-peer payment app, you should start by checking in with the recipient to see if they’ll refund you. In a few cases, the “scam” was really a misunderstanding or mistake.
If you sent money to the wrong person or want to request a refund, open your Cash App home screen and select the “Activity” tab. Then, find the payment and select “...” in the top right corner. Select “Refund” and then “OK.”
This sends a refund request, but the recipient will still have to accept it for you to receive the refund. If they do, you should receive your refund in 1–3 business days.
2. Try to cancel the payment
If you catch the scam quickly enough, you can try to cancel the transfer.
Go to your activity tab and look for the fraudulent payment. If you see the option to “Cancel” it, that means that the scammer hasn’t finalized the transfer. Select “Cancel” immediately, and you should get your money back.
3. Dispute the transaction on Cash App
If you still can’t get a refund, dispute the transaction with Cash App’s customer service.
You can dispute a Cash App transaction when:
- The outcome was not what you expected, such as with duplicate transactions or if you were charged the wrong amount.
- Fraudulent transactions occur when your Cash App card is stolen or lost. You can also dispute fraudulent transactions when your account is compromised or when you didn’t participate in the transaction.
Go to your “Activity” tab, find the payment and select “...” Then, click “Need Help & Cash App Support” to contact Cash App support.
Next, choose “Dispute this transaction.” The Cash App team will then investigate the dispute and inform you of their decision.
4. File a police report
A police report can be a necessary step if you want to dispute fraudulent transactions or help convince Cash App to refund your lost money.
Contact your local law enforcement’s non-emergency line (i.e., not 911) and ask for their fraud department. Explain what happened, and tell them the steps you’ve already taken. They’ll create a file that you can reference when you continue trying to get your money back.
5. Inform your bank of the fraud
Next, contact your bank’s fraud department and explain what happened. They may suggest that you close your current bank account (to stop further fraud) and get set up with a new one.
You can also file a dispute for the transaction with your bank if you’ve linked your Cash App account to a debit card or credit card.
6. Report the transaction as a scam
Now that you’ve done everything in your power to try and get your money back, it’s time to report the scammer. Open Cash App, tap your profile icon, and then select “Support” and “Report a Payment Issue.” Select the scam payment in question and follow the prompts.
7. Report and block the Cash App scammer
Finally, block the scam account by going to the scammer’s profile, scrolling to the bottom, and tapping “Report” or “Block.”
8. File a complaint with the FTC
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) tracks and reports on scams. If you’ve lost money or given up sensitive information that could be used for identity theft — such as your name, address, credit card number, Social Security number (SSN), etc. — you should report it to the FTC.
Report the scam to official government authorities by calling 1-877-FTC-HELP or by visiting ReportFraud.ftc.gov.
9. Freeze your credit
If scammers accessed your Cash App account and have discovered more sensitive financial information about you, they could potentially open new accounts or take out loans in your name.
A credit freeze stops anyone from accessing your credit report.
To freeze your credit, contact each of the three major credit bureaus — Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion — and request a credit freeze. You can also lock your credit with a single tap using Aura’s all-in-one digital security app.
10. Consider signing up for a digital security solution
Scammers don’t just target you over Cash App. If they gain access to your financial or personal information, they could do immense damage to your reputation, credit, and identity.
Aura’s all-in-one digital security solution proactively protects you from Cash App scammers (and worse).
With Aura, you get:
- 24/7 credit monitoring with faster fraud alerts. Aura monitors your bank, credit, and investment accounts in near real-time for signs of fraud. If we see anything suspicious, we’ll alert you up to 4x faster than the competition.
- A secure password manager that warns you if your accounts are compromised. Aura scans the Dark Web and recent data breaches to see if your account usernames and passwords have been leaked. If we find your passwords online, we’ll alert you and then help you replace them with new, more secure ones that you can manage with a single click.
- Antivirus and a VPN to keep your devices safe from hackers. Hackers can come after your money transfer apps. Aura’s antivirus software and virtual private network (VPN) ensure that your devices and networks are secured against hacking.
- #1-rated identity theft protection. Aura constantly monitors your most sensitive personal information (such as your SSN, name, address, home title, and more) for signs of fraud.
- $1,000,000 insurance coverage for eligible losses due to identity theft. If the worst should happen, you have 24/7 access to a team of fraud resolution specialists as well as insurance protection that covers damages caused by identity theft.
Did You Lose Your Cash App Card? Do This!
If scammers have access to your Cash App card, they could potentially steal your money. If your wallet or bag is lost or stolen (or you lose your Cash App card), here’s what to do:
- Open Cash App on your phone.
- Tap the “Cash Card” tab.
- Select “Cash Card Support” from the menu.
- Select “Report your Cash Card” and then “Card Stolen/Compromised” or “Missing Card.”
- Follow the next steps.
How To Secure Your Cash App Account Against Scammers
- Never give away your personal information or Cash App login credentials. Cash App representatives will never ask for your login details, password, Cash App pin, bank account information, or other sensitive data.
- Secure your account with two-factor authentication (2FA). Enable 2FA on your Cash App account using an authenticator app (not via SMS).
- Enable Cash App’s “security lock.” Security lock requires a passcode (or Touch ID) for every payment. This can help protect your account if your phone gets stolen or scammers gain access to it.
- Turn on payment notifications. Set up payment notifications (via text message or email). This will notify you whenever a payment comes out of your Cash App account.
- Stay logged out of Cash App. Don’t keep your account open on your phone. Instead, log out whenever you’re done using the app.
- Don’t keep large amounts of money in your Cash App account. Because your Cash App balance isn’t insured, you should only keep what you need in it. Keep the majority of your money in your bank account or elsewhere.
- Double-check every transaction. Make sure you’re sending the right amount of money to the correct account. Remember, transfers on Cash App are like cash. Once they’re gone, it’s almost impossible to get them back.
- Make sure all emails are coming from official Cash App domains. Any emails from Cash App will come from these domains: @squareup.com, @square.com, or @Cash.app. Anything else (such as a Gmail or Yahoo! email address) is a scam.
- Only contact Cash App customer support through the app. Don’t call phone numbers that you find via Google searches. If you do call a phone number and someone picks up, it’s a scam. Cash App’s phone number only provides automated help. If you get a phone call from someone claiming to be from Cash App, this, too, is a scam. Hang up and block the number.