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Does Apple Pay refund money if you’re scammed?

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  • 9 min read

Apple Pay is a mobile payment service for devices like iPhones, iPads and watches. Users can link their credit or debit cards to the payment service for contactless payments in stores (wherever the contactless payment symbol is displayed), on websites and for in-app purchases. To send and receive money from other Apple Pay users, people can utilise Apple Cash, a peer-to-peer (P2P) transaction method similar to Venmo, PayPal and Cash App.

Although it comes with security functions, Apple Pay is susceptible to scams, much like any money transfer method. If you find yourself in such a situation, you will ask yourself, ‘Can I get a refund if you were scammed over Apple Pay?’ and ‘How can I get a refund from Apple Pay?’. This article will answer these questions for you.

Can you get a refund if you were scammed over Apple Pay?

In short, it is possible to get a refund if you are scammed while using Apple Pay. But it may vary from situation to situation.

Typically, you can get a refund for purchases you’ve made using your credit or debit card via Apple Pay by providing the receipt. The vendor or merchant then processes your refund, which reflects on the card you used for payment within a few days.

However, this is applicable when the vendor/merchant is legitimate. Now, if you were scammed, here are a few things you can do depending on your circumstances:

If you used a debit or a credit card linked to Apple Pay

Although you can report the issue to Apple support, the better alternative would be to report it to your bank since the money would have been debited from your bank account linked to the card used for payments via the Apple Pay app.

If you used an Apple Card linked to Apple Pay

Apple Card is now available for all US customers: How to apply?
Source: Apple

If you used an Apple Card, a credit card created by Apple Inc. and issued by Goldman and Sachs, you can dispute charges or report transaction issues for your Apple Card account.

  • Tap the Apple Card on your device.
  • Click on the transaction you want to dispute under Latest Transactions.
  • Tap the transaction again under Transaction History.
  • Click on Report an Issue and select the one you’re experiencing before tapping Continue.
  • After you tap Continue to Chat, a pre-written message opens in the Messages app, which you can send by tapping the send icon.
  • After sending the message, you will receive a form requesting further details about your issue or be directed to a specialist. Upon receiving the form, you can complete it for further investigation by the credit card issuer, Goldman and Sachs.

If you used Apple Cash

Apple Cash, a peer-to-peer (P2P) transaction method for sending money to another person directly, doesn’t have buyer protection, which means getting your money back can be tricky. You can go to your Latest Transactions and cancel the payment if the recipient hasn’t yet accepted it. You can also report or dispute the transaction. Using the Message app to send or receive money, you can tap Report Junk. Apple mentions on its website to restrict the use of Apple Cash to people you know.

If none of the abovementioned methods works, you can escalate the issue to your local consumer forum. If you have faced a huge financial loss, you should report the scam to your local law enforcement authorities or cyber cell.

Also read: Does Apple Pay work without internet?

You should know the signs of a potential scam. Look for hints that could indicate whether you’re being scammed.

Product or payment scams on online marketplaces

You could transfer money to a seller you found online, only to find them disappear without sending the product. They could have insisted that you use Apple Cash since it doesn’t have buyer protection.

Or you could be the one selling a product online. After receiving the money from an online buyer through Apple Pay and sending them the product, you could find that the money has been debited from your account a few days later. In such cases, the scammer could use a stolen credit card linked to Apple Pay, and once the original owner reports the transaction for fraud, the money is debited from your account.

Using the same tactic, a buyer could transfer more than the required amount and ask for the overpaid money back, usually to a different account. Additional money will then be deducted from your account once the official owner of the card reports fraud.

Suspicious transfers or pay requests

Scammers could “accidentally” transfer money to your account via Apple Pay and ask you to send the money back to another account. Scammers appearing to be buyers could also use the same tactic by overpaying “on accident” and asking for the extra money back, usually to a different account.

Once you send back the money, you could find that more money has been debited from your account at a later stage. Scammers use stolen credit cards, and the money is refunded from your account once the official owner reports the transaction as fraudulent.

Phishing emails or messages stating an issue with or a prize for your Apple Pay account

You could receive an email or a message seemingly from a trusted source like Apple notifying you of an issue with your Apple Pay account or an issue that requires you to take urgent action by clicking on a link provided within the email/message.

The message could also inform you of having won a prize, coupons, discounts or other offers, which would tempt you to click the link and provide your details. Once you click the link, it may take you to a website asking for login details or your card information. The website, although appearing to be legit, could be a set-up to steal your credentials.

What is phishing? Types of phishing scams and how to protect yourself?

Also read: How to refund Apple purchase?

Here are a few things you should follow to avoid being scammed over Apple Pay

As we established earlier, whether you get a refund after getting scammed over Apple Pay is subjective. It isn’t a straightforward process, could take time, or sometimes, users may not even receive a refund. The best way to safeguard your money is to take precautions to avoid being scammed.

  • Use Apple Cash to send, receive or request money from people you know. Apple clearly states so on its website.
Screenshot of Apple website stating, 'Use Apple Cash to send and receive money with people you know'.
  • Verify websites or vendors before making transactions via Apple Pay: Check for security certificates before making purchases on websites that are lesser known to you. Avoid visiting websites via links in emails, messages and pop-ups. Directly enter the URL in the search bar to avoid being led to fake websites impersonating trusted ones.
  • Use strong passwords and enable 2FA for your Apple Pay account: Passwords are recommended to be over 8 characters with a combination of letters, special characters and numbers. Update your passwords regularly or if you think your account has been breached. Two-factor authentication (2FA) is a method for identity verification used for an added layer of security to log in to your account, especially via unknown devices. Upon enabling 2FA, you must enter a code sent to your linked mobile device via SMS or an authentication app in addition to your password.
  • Report suspicious messages, emails, payment requests or transfers: If you notice signs of phishing in emails or messages related to Apple Pay, immediately report them to Apple’s phishing support. Similarly, you can report unknown payment requests or transfers. For unknown transfers, you can dispute the transaction under Lates Transactions.
  • Disable auto-payments for your Apple Cash: To avoid receiving unsolicited payments from unknown and sometimes known people, disable the option to receive payments without your approval automatically. Verify all payment requests you receive before accepting them as an added step.
  • Review your recent transactions: Go through your recent transactions at regular intervals. Dispute a transaction that looks suspicious. It is a good practice to regularly review your bank transactions so that you can report fraud if you notice unauthorised transactions.
  • Avoid making transactions over unsecured Wi-Fi networks: Cybercriminals or scammers can use a type of cyberattack called a Man-in-the-Middle (MITM) attack to intercept communication between your device and the internet through the WiFi network you’re using to steal your personal information. As far as possible, make payments while on a secured and private WiFi network.

Be aware of the scams used to trick Apple Pay users. Know what you can do to avoid being a victim of such scams. And lastly, take immediate action to report or dispute suspicious or fraudulent transactions.

Whether Apple Pay refunds money if you are scammed varies from situation to situation. In some cases, if Apple Pay cannot refund, you can contact the bank that issued your payment card for assistance and a refund.

Also read: Does PayPal refund money if you’re scammed?

Vanashree Chowdhury

Vanashree Chowdhury

Being a tech enthusiast, Vanashree enjoys writing about technology and cybersecurity. She is a designer and marketer by profession and is deeply passionate about working on campaigns for social issues. You can contact her here: