(WFRV) – The Better Business Bureau (BBB) is warning states like Wisconsin to watch out when selling expensive items on Facebook Marketplace.
According to BBB Scam Tracker reports, you should be cautious when a buyer says they need you to upgrade your Zelle or another digital wallet app to accept money from them.
How scammers can get you
BBB explained a possible scam buyer will quickly contact you after you put a pricey piece on the marketplace and will likely say they want to pay by using a peer-to-peer payment app.
Even though the tracker mentioned Zelle, BBB said the scam could also work with CashApp, Venmo, or another similar service.
After getting the payment, BBB reports you would get an email supposedly from a payment service like Zelle.
BBB explained the email would say the buyer allegedly paid with a Zelle “business account” and you would need to upgrade your account to business status to accept the transfer.
To be able to do this, the buyer would apparently need to send you another $300 – which BBB warns they would be happy to do as long as you refund them after.
“I received an email from firstname.lastname@example.org explaining that the funds were waiting, but the buyer had to send an additional $300 in order to upgrade my account because the transaction was over $600, and I would need a business account,” explained a recent scam victim.
BBB reports the scammer then “sent” the extra funds and included screenshots of their Zelle app with the money deducted from their account. After that, they pressured the victim to pay.
The victim said they realized the scammer never sent the money after the refund. By then, the scammer had disappeared.
How to avoid getting scammed
- Don’t trust anyone willing to overpay. BBB said this is not the case if your item is rare and you receive multiple offers, but be cautious of buyers offering you more than your asking price.
- Check email addresses. If you seem to have received an email from Zelle or another payment app, double-check the email address.
- Get to know payment app policies before using them. BBB explained that if someone claims you need a business account to accept payments, check the app’s official website or contact customer service to find out if the claim is true.
- Report scams to Facebook Marketplace. If you think a seller trying to pull off a scam, BBB said you should report them. Find the link to do so by clicking here.
For more tips about selling stuff online, click here.