PayPal Bitcoin Invoice Scam: How It Works
A new fraudulent email is going around these days: the PayPal Bitcoin invoice scam aka the Trust Wallet Payment. How does that work? Criminals take advantage of the fact that the cryptocurrency industry is trendy this year. Since many people are still confused about Bitcoin or any other crypto or exchange-related items, there is no surprise that the crooks use PayPal to lure victims in. In this email, we look at how the scam unfolds, how to report it, and how to recover your funds if you fall for it. Let’s dive in.
Here is a screenshot of how the initial fake invoice from the billing department of PayPal below:
The PayPal Bitcoin invoice scam has questionable content. As the subject line, you might see something like “Invoice from Bitcoin Exchange” or “Invoice from Trust Wallet”. The amount on this bogus invoice could vary but let’s look at the content of the message and point out the red flags so you can detect the scam immediately.
“Here’s your invoice. Bitcoin Exchange sent you an invoice for $499.99. Due on receipt.” On the side, there is an explanation of the fake services rendered, with many grammar mistakes: “You have successfully made a transaction for your Bitcoin (BTC) using Paypal, you Charged the amount mentioned in the INVOICE. This transaction may take 12 hours to appear in your Bank Statement. Do give us a call for any dispute regarding the Payment and issue a Refund at +1 844 689 0484“.
As in every PayPal scam, a button asks you to view and pay the $499 invoice. Don’t click on it. But here is more.
The Red Flags In The PayPal Bitcoin Exchange Scam
As you can notice in the text above, several grammar mistakes stand out. Most words have the wrong capitalization, along with the misuse of commas.
Alternatively, the name could differ. This fake PayPal invoice comes from “Bitcoin Exchange,” but there have been reports of other suspicious invoices for gift cards or other cryptocurrencies, such as the “Solana PayPal Invoice” or the “Trust Wallet Invoice” scam. The fraud concept is the same: crooks asking you to pay an amount and more personal information.
One important thing is to refrain from responding to any links or phone numbers in the email.
Instead, you can log into your PayPal account directly by using the official app or a trusted browser on your laptop/computer. Check out your purchase history to ensure you haven’t been fraudulently billed. Better safe than sorry.
Sometimes, the PayPal Bitcoin Invoice Scam could occur differently. If you use PayPal mostly on your computer at home, you may have your settings arranged so that you don’t even need to sign into your account. You click the blue button, and the required amount disappears instantly from your PayPal balance. You knew that, right?
Using significant technology advancements, PayPal also provides a QR code for its invoices. By that, you are invoiced via email while on the go and directly accessing the invoice on your smartphone using the code. Just point your camera at the blue square. With this trick, the scammer gets people to click a button and receive a large amount of money in return. However, there is more.
Even if you don’t pay the fake invoice, the criminals have more tricks to victimize you. The email could contain a different message from the bogus seller, indicating that the payment has already been taken! The content may include the phrase, “Do give us a call to dispute the payment and issue a PayPal refund at [fake phone number].” Again, this paragraph may contain grammar mistakes, so look for common sense errors.
PayPal Scam Email: If You Answer
If you fall for the trick of calling them back, there could be more complications. If there is more room to victimize you, the criminals try to get more personal, sensitive information. They could request a fake identity verification process or bank details so they can issue a refund.
One last thing: they may also try to convince you to install a remote tool on your computer. They might claim it is easier to administrate the refund but do not do it. It will just give them access to your device, which means they can access your banking websites. Or, of course, other financial platforms you use to make payments.
As both the invoice and the email are genuinely from PayPal (as scammers send unexpected bills through the app), it’s not surprising that many people fall for the scam.
Watch the video below to see the PayPal invoice scam exposed:
How To Report a PayPal Scammer
Warn your family and friends know about this PayPal Bitcoin Invoice scam by distributing the article on your social media account. However, you can also officially report crooks and any other suspicious PayPal activity to the Federal Trade Commission using this link, below:
How To Protect Yourself More
If you want to be the first to find out the most notorious scams every week (not just PayPal), feel free to subscribe to the Scam Detector newsletter here.
Meanwhile, educate yourself with some other PayPal fraud-related articles right under this paragraph, so that you know how to stay safe online. Last but not least, use the comments section below to expose other scammers.
Verify a website below
Are you just about to make a purchase online? See if the website is legit with our validator: