AARP Pennsylvania Survey Finds Majority of Adults Using Payment Apps Unaware of Danger Posed by Scammers

AARP Pennsylvania Survey Finds Majority of Adults Using Payment Apps Unaware of Danger Posed by Scammers

Be Aware of P2P Risks When Paying for Groceries, Other Services During Pandemic

According to a new AARP Pennsylvania survey, two in three people (67%) rely on peer-to-peer (P2P) payment platforms to transfer money in a relatively quick and easy manner. The poll also found that almost three in five (57%) believe they are able to reclaim money sent in error.

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While the platforms are convenient, the difficulty of recovering funds sent through them makes the technology, and those who use it, uniquely vulnerable to scammers. The problem may be particularly prevalent as more people use delivery services for groceries and other necessities during the coronavirus pandemic.

“Scam artists continue to prey on public fears and anxieties during the pandemic,” said AARP Pennsylvania State Director Bill Johnston-Walsh. “Consumers need to learn the risks associated with peer-to-peers payment platforms and proceed with caution before sending money to someone you don’t know.”

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According to the Federal Trade Commission, there were over 52,000 reports of scams and fraud in Pennsylvania and nearly $37 million lost to fraud last year.

Common P2P payment platforms include PayPal, Venmo, Zelle, Square, Google Pay and Apple Pay. The Peer to Peer Payment Practices and Associated Risks: A Pennsylvania Survey of Adults 18-plus details how often people are using these platforms, reasons for using them, and the risks associated with using them. The report also highlights the widespread misuse of P2P tools due to insufficient understanding of how the platforms work.

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