PayPal Fraudulent Emails have been showing up in email boxes lately, and they look real. In fact, the scammers have figured out how to make fake charges appear as well. I know, because I just had it happen. Beware of these sneaky emails! Don’t click on ANY links or call any phone numbers that appear. They are ALL fake.
If you do click on the links, you will be directed to a scammers website, where they will begin asking for your account details to verify your account! Don’t fall for it! PayPal will verify your name, and might ask for your account number. Most of the time, they know who you are by your phone number if you call.
If you are on your computer, you have to have your password, and if you have phone verification activated, they will send you a text or call you.
What Are Paypal Fraudulent Emails?
PayPal fraudulent emails have been around awhile and the realistic look is constantly getting better and better. But the scam is the same. They report a transaction has taken place in your PayPal account. In this case, the email stated that a $499 payment is pending for payment in my PayPal account.
But, I didn’t feel like it was real because my name was never used in the email. PayPal says “they will always include your real name in any email.” This email only contained my email address and listed the payment amount.
No Product or Company Name Mentioned
There is also no mention of any company name, or product that sent the payment request. Just a thank you for interest in their product. But, when it said “we have received your monthly payment” I had no doubt at all this was a fake.
What really got my attention, was the fact that this name “LEWIS” appeared in my PayPal account as “Pending” payment for $499!
How did that get in there? I didn’t make the charge, and there it was!
Now, I have seen these scams before and warned people to always go to their account and see if any charges have been made to the account. I was shocked to see that I actually had a pending charge for LEWIS!
Related post: Beware Of The Amazon Order Email Scam
In most cases nothing shows up, proving it is just a scam email. But, this time was different! I went to my PayPal account and low and behold, there it was! I had a charge pending on my account! I’ll tell you more about that later. But first, let me show you what the email looked like and what to look for.
What Does A PayPal Fraudulent Email Look Like?
If you open your email box and see something that looks like the email I have posted below, DO NOT click on any links! They have some convincing features that make it appear real, but it is not. They go to great lengths to make it appear real by using the same logos, and use borders that appear to be the same as something PayPal might send you, but it is not real, it is fake!
Don’t Take The Bait, Stay Off The Hook!
Here are a few tips to keep yourself out of trouble.
- Never click any links inside any email period! They are fake and will just take you to the scammers website! Then, they will ask for all your personal information and clean you out! Never give out your personal information unless you are on the official site.
- Do Not use any phone numbers provided for you that say “Customer Support” or “Support” They are fake! Go directly to the real website and get the real support number yourself!
- Always go to the official website, before giving any personal information. You will have to use your password to gain access to your account.
- Stay calm and always think things through if you do end up in the wrong place.
I have pointed out the problem areas that are links and phone numbers. Never use provided links and phone numbers.
Examining the bottom of the email, other areas appear to help convince you it’s authentic. But, you need to avoid these links as well, they are all fake. The PayPal help support is called “Help Center,” not “Help and Contact.”
If you read the fine print in the email above, it actually gives itself away, when it says “Emails from PayPal will always contain your full name.” This email only contained my email addy, which wasn’t even the correct email connected to my PayPal account.
This Paypal Fraudulent Email Actually Posted A Fraudulent Charge!
As I said above I couldn’t believe this PayPal account email scam posted a fake charge on my account. I guess they wanted to give me proof it was real. Well, It got me concerned for sure, and I ended up contacting PayPal.
But, it was a Friday, and their support is open 9am to 5pm Monday through Friday. After that, forget about it. You can use chat, but nobody answers. I couldn’t even delete the charge through the resolution center. It is sorta unnerving, when you have a pending charge and can’t speak to anyone.
Here is how the charge appeared in my account.
It looks very real and had me concerned. The very strange part is when I click on invoice to see who it is from, it says invoice no longer exists. So, that tells me something is very wrong indeed. You are always able to access the invoice.
However, There was a button to pay invoice and one to cancel. Both are now gone.
That is a tell tale sign something is very wrong, and the charge should not go through. After I talked to PayPal through messages, they assured me they would not make any payment on this charge.
Where To Report A PayPal Phishing Email
These PayPal fraudulent emails are actually “phishing” emails, because they will get your account information if you click on their links. And you can report them to PayPal by forwarding the email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
You can also report strange activity to email@example.com
“Tell us if you suspect strange activity, identity theft, or phishing and we’ll be on the case. Help us by forwarding any suspicious emails to firstname.lastname@example.org so we can investigate.”
They also advise you to call your bank or credit card and advise them of the situation. With these fake emails, there is nobody to get a refund from. Most disappear as soon as they get your money. That is why it is so important that you DO NOT click any links, and you DO NOT give out any personal information.
PayPal does promise, if you are charged for a transaction you didn’t make, apply for a refund within 60 days, and they have you covered. If you don’t receive an item, or it is different from it’s description. you may qualify for Purchase Protection and they will reimburse you for the full purchase price and any shipping costs.
Other Types Of PayPal Fraudulent Emails
Their are other types of PayPal email scam that all PayPal users should know about.
These scams were more popular a few years back, but still pop up sometimes. They were called “Nigerian Letter Scams Or “419” Scams” The letter involved somebody in a high place from Nigeria needing a bank account to deposit millions of dollars, he was receiving in an inheritance. It requested the victims give their personal information, usually bank account numbers to deposit the money. The scammers would then clean out the unfortunate victims account.
Display Name Scams
This involves emails that use a familiar name like PayPal or Amazon. They post an image of an email that looks very similar to an email that the display name company would send. The use real logos, and similar colors to make everything look legit, but everything is fake. They are just another version of the “phishing” emails. They want to get your information when you click on the links.
PayPal venders can also become victims of scams. They can sell a product to a customer and receive an overpayment for the product. The buyer then asks for the overpayment back. But, what is really happening, is the payment for the product can be a bad check, or a payment from a hacked account. If the vender sends the product and returns the over payment, he can actually lose several times over.
First he loses the product, and if he sends the refund, he also loses that as well. It also is possible, the vendor can be asked to refund the original owner for the payment of the product purchased on their hacked account.
PayPal Tips for Staying Safe
PayPay says that in 2020 fake messages was double the amount in 2019, and it is the #1 most common cyber crime. This is why it is so important to keep yourself safe. Here are a few tips.
Follow these tips to insure your own safety from cyber crimes. Always remember that the scammers have one goal in mind. They want to get your money into their pockets. And they do this by stealing your information. The easiest way to do this is to trick you into giving into thinking you are giving your information to a legitimate website.
So, it is up to you to make sure you are not giving your information to the wrong people. Check the URL of the site, and be sure it is the site you think it is. If not, leave and keep your information safe.
Thank you for reading my article, I hope you have learned something. If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below. I will get back to you ASAP.
I am Chas, creator and founder of Help For Scams And Frauds. I started affiliate marketing and earning money online in 2015. And I can tell you, anyone can do this. But, in order to build a business the right way you must have the right training and avoid the get rich quick schemes.
Check out my #1 Recommendation For The Best Online Training in 2023
14 thoughts on “Watch Out – PayPal Fraudulent Emails Could Take Your Money!”
There are a lot of scam spoof emails out there for lots of companies not just PayPal. However, if you fall for them they can easily cost you lots of money. They like to play on people’s emotions stating that you have to collect now to incite people to make an emotional response which is what they want.
I would also say if you are really unsure you should just call them and ask if it’s legit or not.
It is not always easy to spot the scam, and I agree that the best advice is to call the company and make sure. But, you can’t use any links or phone numbers that are given to you, they are spoofs. this particular email automatically showed up inside my account. You can’t get much more realistic than that! I contacted PayPal, which is not easy on weekends. and there was no authorization for the payment. I am glad it was blocked.
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Thank you for this informative post.
I often receive many fraudulent emails, more so from supposedly PayPal and Amazon. I’m pretty clued up with these type of scams, but they seem to be getting more legit like and harder to figure out that they are fraud.
I’m going to share this post to family and friends who are less “tech savvy”, as it’s very helpful.
Thanks again for this very helpful post, I really enjoyed the content.
I just got a fraudulent email today, saying a charge was made at Walmart. They just never stop! But, this particular scam did appear as a charge in my account! I am glad I caught it quickly and alerted PayPal. Thank you for sharing my post. Maybe it will save someone else some stress and possibly some money.
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There are way too many of these scams going on in different and innovative forms. These scammers are pretty good at trying to fool you with cloned websites. Being vigilant (as you were ) and understanding how they operate is really helpful. I didn’t know it was that easy to charge someone’s PayPal account. I really need to check my statements more frequently! good to know about the various kinds of scams being run by these unscrupulous people.
Thanks for highlighting PayPal’s 60 day policy.
Yes, you are right. There are way too many of thee scams out there, but they aren’t going away anytime soon. The bad guys just keep getting better. Honestly, I thought my PayPal account was protected by the 2 step process. But, that only applies to logging into the account. I guess anyone who gets your email address is able to place a charge in your account. You have to be the one to call it fraudulent. It is good to know that PayPal gives you up to 60 days to report a fraudulent charge.
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I have received emails similar to this but not from PayPal. Usually they are (supposedly) from a software company saying I am renewing my yearly protection for my computer. The first time this happened, I ended up calling the number to find out what it was. It sounded very fishy to my and ended hanging up on them. They were quite persistant. They kept calling me and began to get very nasty. After awhile, I blocked their number and kept checking my bank statements. No charge was ever listed.
This is very scary. Everything now-a-days is online. You have to be very wary of everything. I’m glad I wasn’t pulled into the scam but I fear for others who may be more vulnerable.
Thanks for sharing this information. We can all heed the warning!
it is annoying to get persistent spam emails. I have also had annoying calls from very persuasive salespeople who are very good at selling! Not fun at all. But, when the cahrge appears on your account, it is scary. Thankfully PayPal wasn’t fooled either. They were very appreciative of learning the site where the scam originated. Always send any emails to them, they help them a lot with their investigations.
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One has to be very careful because these fraudulent emails are unfortunately quite common and scammers are always looking for new and sadly, innovative ways to try to trick people out of their hard-earned money.
You’re right, the best way to protect yourself is to always be alert whenever money or account details are involved with any online transactions and as a rule, I generally don’t click on any suspicious links or attachments from unknown senders.
Thank God you were so vigilant, and thank you for sharing this helpful information on PayPal fraudulent emails.
You can’t be careful enough today, all they need is your email address. That’s why i try not to give mine out. I don’t get concerned until they are putting chares in my account. Then it is personal, and very upsetting.
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Thank you for educating me on this scam. It is crazy how these scams are getting better by the year. Is this the same scam that has been done by the same people who did the Amazon and gift cards?
It has been used a lot and there are many of those people being caught, However the guys involved always get away with it and there are tones of videos on YouTube.
These are normally people in India who are doing these.
You are welcome. I don’t know if it’s the same people, but it very well could be the same people who sent out Amazon Scam Emails. Thanks for the heads up on YouTube videos. I also did not know it was people in India doing this. Thanks for letting me know. And thank you for taking the time to leave a comment, please stop back soon!
Hi Chas – This was truly amazing to read. I, thankfully, haven’t had to go through this before but thank you so much for sharing this story. The ability for cyber criminals to get money out of innocent people never seize to amaze me. But to go so far as to post a fake transaction on your PayPal account is next level. Is it just a coincidence, or do you think that the scammers purposefully started this fake transaction on a Friday in the hopes that you’d have a tough time getting through to PayPal customer service?
Glad to hear you learned something new. I was shocked as well. Paypal told me that they must have gotten my email somewhere, and that allows the to post a charge on your account! I never knew it was that simple. They actually posted the transaction on Wednesday, but I didn’t catch it till Friday. I can’t really say they waited till Friday. But, yes PayPal is hard to contact on the weekend! Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment, please stop back soon.