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  • Writer's pictureThe San Juan Daily Star

DACO warns of fraud scheme involving phony ‘PayPal’ emails

Designated Consumer Affairs Secretary Hiram Torres Montalvo

By The Star Staff

Designated Consumer Affairs (DACO) Secretary Hiram Torres Montalvo alerted island consumers on Sunday about a fraud scheme involving fake emails from the instant payment application PayPal.

“In recent days, our staff identified a new scheme to defraud the consumer through alleged payments to the PayPal service,” Torres Montalvo said in a written statement. “The emails associated with this illicit activity detail that they have received a payment of $200 from a person and that, to access those funds, the recipient has to change his account from ‘personal to commercial’ and for this he needs to send the recipient half of what was sent, in this case $100. It is important that the consumer knows that the original money was never sent and that this ‘email’ is only to defraud the recipient.”

“The email that is linked to this scheme is a very sophisticated one. It seems real because it hides the recipient and contains all the logos and other characteristics of those sent by the PayPal company,” the DACO chief added. “However, despite the fact that the ‘email’ indicates the sending and alleges that it cannot activate the funds until changing the account to a business [account], if the consumer enters his PayPal system, he can see that there is no movement, so that is another way to detect this model of fraud.”

“The purpose of these fraud schemes is to acquire the personal data of the victims to then be used in criminal activity,” Torres Montalvo said. “These emails are often filtered by the security systems of devices and are flagged as ‘spam;’ however, some … go directly to the ‘Inbox.’ Our appeal is that you evaluate these emails and their content very carefully before acting on them.”

Torres Montalvo invited consumers who have received such an email to contact DACO through the agency’s pages on the social networks Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, as well as the agency’s internet portal:

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