The entire world is already in the new year, save for the Chinese, who celebrate theirs on February 10. The year 2024 promises to be a good one for online workers and others. The COVID-19 pandemic has simmered down. However, it left the world with a legacy of remote work.
For online workers, choosing the correct payment method is extremely important. In this regard, there has been a bit of bad news coming from Argentina, where a lot of people who use Payoneer cards have had their accounts drained of all their savings in a case of 2-factor authentication fraud. In this article, we discuss how to protect your payoneer account from fraud.
Payoneer serves freelancers and other online workers
If you are not in the know, Payoneer is one of the global leaders when it comes to banking for freelancers, online workers, and others. It’s an alternative to PayPal. One challenge for PayPal is that it’s not available in all countries.
As an example, countries like Pakistan, Montenegro, and Zimbabwe only have a one-sided PayPal experience. While they can add virtual foreign currency cards to their PayPal, they cannot receive money into these accounts. So, people in these countries can use PayPal to make purchases, but they cannot use it for purchases.
This is where Payoneer comes into the fray. It has no such restrictions and has become a favourite payment platform for online workers around the world. Payoneer is very serious about security from fraud.
The company introduced SMS based 2-factor authentication on accounts a while back. What it means is that when you withdraw money or carry out other transactions, an SMS is supposed to be delivered to your phone with a code that you can use to approve the transaction.
Payoneer is no stranger to fraud
Payoneer is great in that it allows thousands of people to be paid for online work. However, there have been complaints over the years from people whose funds were stolen. You only have to carry out a Google search to understand what we are talking about.
The fact that there is so much money floating around in Payoneer accounts makes the platform a potential windfall for fraudsters. These people also take advantage of the fact that some people are rather uninformed and too trusting when it comes to managing their online accounts.
If you use Payoneer, you really need to be on the lookout. Otherwise, you could end up losing everything. In the most recent case of fraud involving Payoneer, it has been reported that some Argentinians lost tens of thousands of dollars. So, how do you protect yourself from this type of loss?
How to protect your Payoneer Account from fraud
If you use Payoneer, you need to be on guard, as we have already noted. A lot of people have been losing their savings, and you don’t want to be one of the victims. The following is how to protect your Payoneer account from fraud:
1. Beware of phishing scams
If you go online, you will come across a lot of people blaming Payoneer for having lost their money. Moreover, Payoneer does not seem to be very inclined to replace the money that is lost in people’s accounts.
If you dig deep, you will learn that in most cases, the victims tend to be responsible for their loss. We have already noted that Payoneer is a major target for scammers around the world. Most of these use phishing to get their hands on people’s banking details.
Phishing has been around for a while, but people seem to still be uneducated about this type of fraud. If you get an email purporting to be from Payoneer and asking for your login details, you are likely the target of a phishing attempt.
The same applies if you receive a text purporting to be from Payoneer. The fraudsters are very clever. They have created a clone website to which the victims are directed. Once you arrive on such a page, you will be asked to enter your Payoneer account details. That is something that you should be on the lookout for.
These websites may appear to be genuine, but if you look very closely, you will notice that they are not the real Payoneer page. They may have spelling errors, or the URL may be wrong. In any case, don’t be enticed by claims that your account is in danger or anything else. If you get such a message, it’s best to contact Payoneer over the phone.
2. Bookmark the Payoneer web page
One thing that you should do is bookmark the genuine Payoneer page. This ensures that you do not fall prey to phishing attacks. Let’s say you have gotten a message in your email inbox telling you that you need to update your Payoneer details.
Instead of clicking on the link in the message, it’s advisable to go to the bookmarked Payoneer login page. You will then be able to log into the genuine Payoneer website. You can also use the Payoneer app to check your account.
Once you are logged in, check if there are messages from Payoneer. They will be displayed on the icon to the top right of the page. If any action is needed on your account, this is where you will get the information. It’s safe to say never click on a Payoneer link in your email.
3. Transfer your money into your bank account
Another way of protecting yourself is by only using Payoneer as a payment gateway. Once you have received money into your account, it’s best to immediately transfer it to your bank. This would be your bank in your country.
There are people out there who keep thousands of dollars in their Payoneer accounts. That would be fine if there was no such risk of fraud. Make sure that your loss is not devastating by moving your money to another account.
Of course, people keep their money in Payoneer accounts for a number of reasons. Some do it to avoid paying taxes in their home countries. Others do so because of exchange rules that may see them losing money should the be transferred into an account in the country where they leave.
However, you will discover that taxes are not too bad when it comes to safeguarding your hard-earned money. It’s better to pay up than to lose tens of thousands of dollars in the way that some people in Argentina have lost their savings.
Transferring money into your account is also something that you can do with Paypal. If you are in South Africa, you may be looking to transfer money from Paypal to your Capitec account. That’s something that can easily be done. Whether it’s Payoneer or Paypal, it’s probably not a very good idea to keep all your savings in one basket.
This post was dedicated to showing you how to protect your Payoneer account from fraud. In most cases, Payoneer fraud was shown to involve phishing. You should, therefore, never click on links in your email inbox that try to bait you into providing your login details. Also, don’t click on SMS messages that reach your phone asking you to provide the same.