Fraudsters on the Internet have found a new method for stealing cash from ordinary people. Disguising their fraudulent activity as legitimate invoices, scammers pose as PayPal sellers requesting invoices for cryptocurrencies. These include popular cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Stellar XLM, and Terra Luna. These cybercriminals will attempt to contact any PayPal user email they can find. Some of these invoices are created through PayPal, which then generates an email and in-app notification. This scam is particularly nefarious since some of these emails and notifications actually come from the legitimate PayPal email and website, which leads victims to believe that they are on the hook for these random, questionable invoices. As a result, victims become nervous that they’ll be responsible for these invoices, deciding to pay them out. This is exactly what the scammer is after – your hard-earned money.
Additionally, scammers will prompt you to click on malicious links, or call a certain phone number, in order to dispute or cancel the invoice. Clicking on any of these links, or calling any of these fraudsters, should be avoided at all times. If you do contact these cybercriminals, you are simply giving them more resources to steal from you. They might ask for personal information, ask you to download shady software, or even request direct control of your device. You most definitely want to avoid any of these possible scenarios.
How do I avoid falling victim to PayPal Crypto Invoice scams?
Undoubtedly, you might be wondering; how do I protect myself? As fraudsters create more and more legitimate looking scams, it is the upmost importance to stay safe and diligent online. Here are some tips to help you stay safe:
Always double check email addresses, contact details, and URLs. Some of these fraudulent PayPal Crypto Invoice scams come from suspicious looking emails. However, some potential victims have been sent invoices generated straight from PayPal, which means their messages came from a legitimate email. If you don’t recognize these invoices, it is best to always contact PayPal support before proceeding to make any decisions.
In addition, NEVER click on any links inside an email you don’t recognize, as this is a method scammers use to install malware. It’s best not to call any phone numbers you don’t recognize, as well.
Lastly, if you suspect you’ve been sent a scam invoice, always send screenshots to email@example.com, so their support team can attempt to tackle the issue. Potentially, they can stop the fraudsters in their tracks.