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Increased Scams with Zelle & CashApp During COVID-19

A new study shows how puppy scams increased by over 280% during the pandemic with financial apps Zelle (#1) and CashApp (#2) were the financial used most widely. Data analyzed the top 15 states where you were most likely to lose money with New York clocking in at an average loss of $923.

While Zelle does have a “report a scam” feature, their website also says:

Because you authorized the payment, you may not be able to get your money back. A few types of scams reported involve purchasing tickets, buying puppies and other financial scams like cash flips.

Several victims of these cash app scams, had their bank flag the transaction as fraud but some how didn’t manage to protect their customers from the scams.

Yorkies or Yorkshire Terriers and French Bulldog are the Top Two Puppies

Nashville, TN based The Wild & The Tamed Online Pet Shop says there are few simple things to look out for to spot a puppy scam.

  • $100 a $1,000 is average loss to the consumer with $5,000 being the most extreme
  • People in their 20s and 30s are the largest target group
  • Around 37,000 complaints yearly to the FTC for pet scams and fraud
  • 40% of individuals who get taken by animal scams never report it as such because they are not aware.
  • Never wire or pay any money before ever seeing the animal
  • Do not purchase animals and pets from any retail store or private owner who is not AKC registered as a breeder

Most puppy scam victims are from:

  • California
  • Texas
  • Florida
  • New York
  • Pennsylvania

Click here for some tips and information from the BBB and how to avoid or minimize the potential of you getting taken.

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