Scammers are targeting Cash App users with fake ‘free-money’ giveaway campaigns
The scammers who are targeting the Cash App are using the same hashtags that are used by Cash App’s legitimate campaigns. If we talk about YouTube, these scammers use it to promote ‘money generators’ or ‘cash app’ hacks instead of running fake Cash App campaigns.
- The issue:
- The Cash App is a payment service which conducts marketing campaigns that offer cash rewards. The app provides these rewards on social media platforms such as Twitter or Instagram, under hashtags of “#CashAppFriday” and “#SuperCashAppFriday”. Scammers on the other side were taking advantage of this and targeting users of Cash App with fake giveaway campaigns.
- Cash App users are targeted by scammers hoping for free money. The hashtag ‘#CashAppFriday’ is a popular trend on Twitter. This famous hashtag is used to promote cash giveaways, which here refers to Cash App which offers users with rewards for a like, retweet, or comment on their posts on Twitter.
- It may sound too good to be true but, some it in-fact is true. The Cash App scammers seek to capitalize on the hashtag #CashAppFriday, from Instagram and YouTube, leading to $10 to $1,000 being stolen from victims.
- More details on the fake ‘cash reward’ campaign:
- The scammers targeted Cash App users on Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube with fake ‘free money’ giveaway campaign. They tricked the users into sending small amounts in return for a big amount, which sometimes could even be ten times higher.
- The scammers used the same hashtags that were used by Cash App’s campaigns. In order to lure victims into sending amounts, they posted images with transactions allegedly from winners.
- Scammers also accepted prepaid or gift cards as an initial payment. Some of the researchers also noted that the scammers asked the victims to sign up for services with a provided referral code, that offered money in return.
- However, the victims who suffered from the scammers would never get any cashback or a reply from them.
- A different trick used in YouTube:
- The scammers used YouTube to promote ‘money generators’ or ‘cash app’ rather than running fake Cash App campaigns.
- When users search for keywords relating to ‘Cash App’ or ‘free money’, it leads to videos which promote claim on hacks to get free money on Cash App.
- These videos instruct viewers to go to a certain website which offers a top-up service where users get to choose the amount which they want to be delivered to their account.
- The websites may be focused on Cash App, requiring the users to “search” for the Cash App page. The website further redirects the victims to a page where they are asked to install mobile games and play them for a certain amount of time.
- After performing all of the mentioned steps, the website claimed the users to receive the requested amount.
- The video creators document the video to show the increment in value of their available funds or sometimes only increase the money on the screen to make it look like the generator works and receive the money they request.
Cash App Friday initially began as a legitimate giveaway. A person-to-person (P2P) payment service, which was owned by Square, initially launched the campaign as a promotional tool. Contestants who wanted to participate used their Instagram and Twitter accounts to enter to be the part of the contest carried out during campaign by commenting or retweeting the company’s posts.
To reward the contestants in return, Cash App would select eight winners and give $500, $250 to 12 people, and $100 prize to 30.
Users leave comments on Instagram posts of Cash App. Taking advantage of this scammers jump onto these posts using fake accounts, pretending to be the legitimate company. One fine example is named as $cshfridayoffical. Such accounts are used to request money for verification purposes. For example, users would be asked to send $20 or $30 in order to claim $700.
Another approach taken by scammers, is that instead of targeting #CashAppFriday directly, they would rather look for commenters and follow them, in the hope to entice users into fake cash flipping scams.
These cash flippers claim to take small amounts of money and turn it into larger amounts, for example turning $7 into $120.
In such scams, the scammers pretend that they have some key knowledge to tamper with online app transactions. Following to that once they receive payment from the victim, they would promise to increase the value of their funds and boost their bank balance, all out of nothing but the good willingness of their hearts.
Naturally once the users, hand over the money, scammers walk away with the acquired money and no such ‘flipping of money’ occurs.
Also, YouTube has turned out to be a great tool for #CashAppFriday scams. Currently if you do a quick search, it would result countless uploads that promises viewers on how to hack the Cash App.
The videos too tell the same story like: On how a Cash App with $0, after making a visit to a website asking for Cash App ‘$cashtag’ ID, and the selection of the money they want, which ranges from $10 to $1000, are successfully generating money. It simply shows how out of thin air in return for doing nothing more but installing and executing a few mobile apps one can flip money.
One of the sources for funds for such scammers are the mobile applications, which may masquerade as games or utilities. It is possible in such a way as through malvertising or commission per installation models in the mobile application, or also if they are able to compromise victim’s devices through malicious code.
Cash App will never ask you for money to ‘verify’ your account and this technique is an old one used across phishing schemes the world over. Some cash giveaways may be legitimate, but if you choose to enter them, never hand over sensitive financial information or your own money — no matter how good the deal seems to be.