Venmo App Allows Drug Buyers to Share Their Purchases With the World

cageymaru

Fully [H]
Joined
Apr 10, 2003
Messages
20,994
Many internet users love social media so Paypal designed the Venmo app to target the Facebook crowd. Sign up for the service with the privacy focused Facebook login and the Venmo app will allow you to send money to friends and make purchases at approved merchants. You can even see what your friends are buying within the app! It even brags that "We'll never post without your permission." What most fail to realize is that the default settings for the app are set to public and security researcher Hang Do Thi Duc has already been scraping data from the service for over a year.

It seems that the Facebook crowd likes to pay for drugs, alcohol, and sex with the Venmo app. Some enterprising person has setup a bot connected to a Twitter account that scrapes the app for drug references and images. Then it reposts their messages and pictures for the world to see. I love social media because there is never a dull day watching people fail.

The Cannabis Retailer

With access to the first name, I could infer that this person was male. I was also able to determine that he operates out of Santa Barbara, California. You might wonder how: some of his customers have a Facebook URL as their profile picture which includes their Facbeook ID and so it was easy for me to see where some of them, and therefore the protagonist of this story as well, live. Someone I've called Ronny made the following 19 payments to the drug dealer throughout the year with references to cannabis.
 

haste.

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Nov 11, 2011
Messages
1,651
I've only ever bought pizza with VENMO, and every single time, my friends and I said "thanks for the drugs or sex"
so yeah....
Well of course. I also like "illegal gambling proceeds" if to a cohort in the finance industry.
 

cageymaru

Fully [H]
Joined
Apr 10, 2003
Messages
20,994
Darn they deleted the Twitter bot's posts. :( I was enjoying the steady stream of prostitution, drugs, and alcohol sales with Facebook pics attached.
 

kidstechno3

Limp Gawd
Joined
Jun 29, 2016
Messages
200
I use venmo with my friends when traveling since sometimes it's a heck of a lot easier for just one person to pay then send them money after, but always wondered why you could see the messages left by other people. I guess they could change their privacy settings to only allow friends/followers to view them. I guess on the other hand it brings awareness to fact you're putting potential sensitive info out there that could be used against you? Or just someone being a complete d bag.
 

SuperAnt

n00b
Joined
Dec 12, 2013
Messages
13
Cannabis is legal in California although most employers still take a dim view of it.
 

oROEchimaru

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Jun 1, 2004
Messages
4,662
in states where its legal people post about it more freely. in states where it is not... usually younger people do only.
 

AceGoober

Live! Laug[H]! Overclock!
Joined
Jun 25, 2003
Messages
23,940
Wait until someone's friend finds out they bought from poopsenders for them...
 

Zarathustra[H]

Extremely [H]
Joined
Oct 29, 2000
Messages
33,817
Lol.

Wow. What a moronic design. Default setting is no financial transaction privacy?

I'm glad I've never used the app. Not that I have anything to hide...
 

Dekoth-E-

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Mar 23, 2010
Messages
7,599
I hate this stupid app and people sending me money keep using it forcing me to keep it installed. I don't understand why as it is Down All the Fucking Time. Or rather anytime some jackass sends me money over it against my protests, it is down for 2 fucking days holding my money hostage.
 

Zarathustra[H]

Extremely [H]
Joined
Oct 29, 2000
Messages
33,817
I hate this stupid app and people sending me money keep using it forcing me to keep it installed. I don't understand why as it is Down All the Fucking Time. Or rather anytime some jackass sends me money over it against my protests, it is down for 2 fucking days holding my money hostage.

Just demand cash. Be like Fuck you. You owe me money. Give me cash.

I've never used Venmo and never will. I don't see what it does that regular Paypal didn't already do better.
 

Mike89

Gawd
Joined
Jan 27, 2003
Messages
702
Oh just great, a drug dealing app. Back in the day when I used to smoke the crazy hay, I probably would have loved it. After seeing a lot of family members turning into brain dead potheads before my eyes, I now see what I couldn't see many years ago.
 

Spidey329

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Dec 15, 2003
Messages
8,683
Oh just great, a drug dealing app. Back in the day when I used to smoke the crazy hay, I probably would have loved it. After seeing a lot of family members turning into brain dead potheads before my eyes, I now see what I couldn't see many years ago.

Drug dealing app? Far from it, given it creates a transaction record which is just another thing to be used as evidence against you. It has legitimate uses as it's far easier than many methods for everyday transactions.

That's like claiming cash is used mainly for drug deals as well. Just because they are used, doesn't mean it's the purpose of them.
 

Dekoth-E-

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Mar 23, 2010
Messages
7,599
Just demand cash. Be like Fuck you. You owe me money. Give me cash.

I've never used Venmo and never will. I don't see what it does that regular Paypal didn't already do better.

Well being fair it does charge far less fees than paypal. Given the damn thing is owned by paypal you would think they would just match the fee structure and eliminate the need for the app period.
 

Zarathustra[H]

Extremely [H]
Joined
Oct 29, 2000
Messages
33,817
Well being fair it does charge far less fees than paypal. Given the damn thing is owned by paypal you would think they would just match the fee structure and eliminate the need for the app period.

PayPal charges no fees if you pull the funds via EFT from your checking account and are sending to a friend.

You only have to pay PayPal fees if you use credit/debit or if it is a non-friend/family business transaction so you want PayPal's protection.
 

exiled350

2[H]4U
Joined
Jun 26, 2013
Messages
2,136
I just use Bitcoin for buying drugs/prostitutes. It's totally safe, anonymous, and there totally isn't a permanent ledger that anyone can access and connect me to any illegal dealings.
 
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