Tag Archives: Paypal

Scary PayPal Scam

This screenshot is of an email I received today. As I have used Paypal in the past [some years ago] and as the so-called transaction info. is addressed to an ‘Andrea’, I did have a moment of total dislocation. Had the scammers hacked my financial information?

And then I thought to look at the sender:


I’m pretty sure that Paypal, the real Paypal, doesn’t use gmail to communicate with customers! Nevertheless, I did get a fright so I thought I’d share this scam so no-one else gets a fright…or god forbid…clicks on one of those nice, official looking links.

Why not? Because those links will not lead to anywhere good. They could lead to a site that downloads a trojan to take over the computer, or they could lead to a bogus Paypal page where they’re asked to enter their ID and password. The ID and password will fail, of course, but the scammers will now know how to access that Paypal account. Lose-lose.

If you even suspect that an email might be a scam, don’t click on any of the links! Danger Will Robinson. Danger!

As to how the scammers found me, that I don’t know. Did they send out millions of emails all addressed to women of different names in the hope that a few would hit the jackpot?

Or is there a database out there that contains my email address and first name but not my last name? That sounds a bit far fetched. I mean if they knew my email address and my first name, why would they not know my last name?

Or…given how often we’re asked to provide our email address, did some algorithm go through the data here, on this blog and profile me?

A quick check revealed that I’ve written twelve posts [counting this one] that are either about Paypal, or mention Paypal. Another check showed that ‘Andrea’ has been mentioned in 16 posts counting this one. One of those posts is actually about the singer Andrea Bocelli, but that’s still a lot of identifiers. Curiously, the one thing you won’t find on my blog is my actual email address. So how did they find me?

I may never know how these scammers do what they do, but I know one thing for sure, the person who owns the email address used by the scammers has been hacked. After I publish this post I’m going to email him/her and show them the same screenshot that you have seen. After that it’s up to them to work out how the scammers managed to hack their gmail account and use it to farm out scams to other people. Sadly, this person really doesn’t have anything to hide, not any more.


How to send money using Paypal

Many years ago the only way you could send money overseas was by telegraphic transfer and even with e-banking it was a convoluted process involving scary things like SWIFT codes. It was also expensive as each transaction cost about $20. Today I’ve discovered a cheaper and easier way using the Paypal ‘Send Money’ feature.

I love sharing information so I thought I’d do a step-by-step tutorial for anyone else not familiar with the process. And if you are one of those wonderful people who would like to donate to the Pennant Park Project that I posted about yesterday, then this is for you as well!

[Note : the following presumes that you have a Paypal account already. If your recipient doesn’t have an account they will be prompted to open one so they can receive the funds.]

Step 1  Log in to Paypal

Step 2 ¬†Click on the Send Money¬†tab next to ‘My Account’.

Step 3  Enter the email address of the person you wish to send money to.

Step 4  Enter the amount you wish to send.

Step 5 ¬†Click on the small arrow next to the currency box and scroll down until you find the currency you wish to use. [I use Australian dollars so I don’t have to mess around with currency converters. This way Paypal will do the conversion for me.]

Step 6 Near the bottom of the window you will see two tabs : Purchase and Personal. Click on the Personal tab.

Step 7 Click on whichever Personal option you prefer. I chose ‘Other’.

Step 8 Click the orange Continue button.

One last window to complete and you’re done!

Down near the bottom third of this new window is an area called ‘Email to recipient’.

Step 9 ¬†Type ‘Pennant Park‘ in the subject line.

This is very important as it will tell your recipient what the funds are for. If you leave the subject line blank your money/donation will still reach your recipient but they may have a hard time knowing it has arrived and there’s nothing worse than having to go through a bank statement line by line.

Add a message if you wish.

Step 10 Click the ‘Send Money‘ button and that’s it, easy peasy!

So next time you want to send someone a gift or to make a donation to a worthy cause all you will need is Paypal and the email address of the recipient. It really couldn’t be any easier. ūüėÄ

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