GCash Scams via Facebook Messenger

Here is a scenario that often happens for a newbie GCash user — he has a urgent issue that needs resolution and so he posts his problem on a Facebook page, wall or group.

He doesn’t get a proper reply and instead gets a messenger chat request from a “GCash Helper” account. The person messaging seems to know what he is talking about and then asks for his GCash details. Unknowingly, the GCash user gives away his PIN and OTP to the smooth talking person.

Afterwards, he gets an SMS informing him of a bank transfer to an unknown bank account. He has been scammed — that on top of the issue he was trying to get a solution to.

Unfortunately, this has happened to a lot of unwitting victims. It also gives a bad impression of an “inside job” because the scammer impersonated a GCash support person.

Here are examples when I search for “GCash care” or “GCash helper” or “GCash assistance” in Messenger:

As we can see, only one of these accounts is the official one (the one with the check mark). All others are most likely scammer accounts.

Please do not entertain any messenger chat request as the official chat support for GCash has now moved to a dedicated help portal here.

What are the official GCash support/help options?

You can reach support via:

  • Submitting a ticket here
  • Using the live chat via the “Contact GCash Support” bubble in the help portal
  • Emailing support@gcash.com
  • Calling the 2882 hotline

Among all of these, I recommend using the live chat option as this is available 24/7 and you will be able to talk to a person at the other end.

The hotline usually takes a long time as there are limited call agents available and they are only available during typical office hours.

What are some tips to help prevent phishing scams in GCash?

As they say, an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure.

  1. Do not give away any personal information, especially your MPIN and the OTP. Once you give it away, then it’s like giving away the keys to your house.
  2. When posting online regarding any GCash related topic, be sure to obscure or erase your mobile number before you post.
  3. For sellers: Have a separate GCash account for your store. This should be different from your personal account. Since you will be posting your seller account, be extra vigilant with messages from Messenger.
  4. Always update your secret questions in the GCash app (Settings > Account Authentication).
  5. Do not click any links in any SMS messages you receive. More often than not change announcements should come from inside the GCash app itself.

Someone scammed me. How can I apply to the Customer Protect program?

Once there are unauthorized transactions, you can report these to GCash support. If the claim is valid, you will be receiving compensations based on the amount stolen.

Here are the conditions of the program:

  • You should report the transaction within 15 days of the incident
  • You should also include proof of the transaction/s as well as proof of your identity
  • The incident involved use of the GCash app, GCash Mastercard or GCash via FB Messenger

Someone swindled me. Is this included in the program?

Unfortunately, no. Since you gave your money willingly, the transaction is considered authorized. However, you can petition that GCash disable the swindler’s GCash account.

What is the scope of the program?

The compensations depend on the level of verification. Typically, the compensation is the amount of the unauthorized transaction, however the limits can vary based on the level.

  • Fully Verified users can reach a limit of Php100,000
  • Semi-verified users can reach a limit of Php10,000
  • Basic users can reach a limit of Php2,000

Summary

Scammers come in many forms, oftentimes via Facebook Messenger. There is actually no official support account for GCash in Messenger anymore. Any support should be coursed through the GCash Help Center.

If you’d like to learn more about GCash, I created a how-to on the basics of GCash.

Here is a list of links if you’re interested in the main GCash functions:

If you are also interested in knowing what resources I used to make this blog happen, please look at my resources page.

How do you like the tutorial? Did I miss anything? Please add your comments and suggestions below!

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