A Disturbing New Facebook PayPal Scam Easily Steals Victims Money

March 9th · 3 min read

Guardio Research Team
Guardio Research Team

Facebook and Paypal are both platforms that Cybercriminals use to lure victims into money scams. One of the most common PayPal scams is a phishing email, disguised as PayPal, stating you have a balance to withdraw and need to login to your account. But the latest Facebook PayPal scam is more ingenious than most because it uses the platform differently to con people out of money. It can catch even the savviest people off guard because it’s so personal in nature.

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How it works:

First, the hackers impersonate a user on Facebook: When hackers steal Facebook logins, they sell the hacked details on the dark web, for anyone to buy and do as they wish. Once scammers acquire the hacked details, the scammer writes a Facebook message to the hacked user's Facebook friends. They write that they sold items online but have a limit on their PayPal account and ask the victim to receive money in their PayPal account, withdraw it and then send it back via bank transfer.

The victim doesn't think it costs them anything as they are receiving the money to their PayPal, so they genuinely believe that they're doing a favor, but are actually falling victim to the scam.

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The Facebook PayPal Scam

The victim checks their Paypal account and sees that they got the Paypal transfer, and wires the funds to the scammers' bank account. As soon as they wire the funds, the scammer performs a chargeback on PayPal, meaning the transaction gets reversed, the transferred money gets sent back to the scammer. The victim only later sees the transaction was pulled and realizes it was a scam.

Facebook PayPal

PayPal sent out a message saying:

"We advise customers to be wary if they receive unusual requests about their PayPal account, especially requests to move large amounts of money, even when the request appears to come from someone they know. Always question uninvited approaches in case it's a scam, and check directly with the person concerned to verify the request. And never accept or move money on behalf of someone else."

How to avoid being scammed

  • Passwords: Use separate passwords for your logins, especially when it comes to big sites like Facebook and Paypal. If a hacker lands both of these together, the risk is much higher.

  • It's not you, it's them: ANY message, on Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram, email or text, that requests you to wire money - immediately call the person who sent this to verify it's really them. In this scam, the victims could have saved themselves by doing this. When an account gets hacked, it can take a while before the user notices. During this time, the hacker can perform a lot of damage in the user's name.

  • Use browser protection: With browser protection like Guardio installed, you'll get warned before entering sketchy sites or downloading malicious apps that could steal your information and sell it on the dark web.

  • Account Monitoring: Enable account monitoring to know when your information surfaces somewhere it shouldn't. This way, you will know to act immediately to protect your information. (See what to do if your information has been breached)

The Facebook and Paypal scams continue to show up, but can be avoided. Use browser protection to avoid phishing links, use strong passwords and never, ever, wire money to someone without confirming it's truly them.

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Sources Forbes

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