Concert-goers are warned to not pay for tickets using the ‘friends and family’ function on PayPal due to a scamming loophole.

Consumer Protection has received numerous complaints from West Aussies unable to retrieve their money after using this function to transfer funds to scammers posing as genuine ticket sellers on classified sites.

Most PayPal transactions are covered by a buyer protection policy, whereby consumers are entitled to receive refunds if goods are not received or differ greatly to the item’s description.


Payments made through the ‘friends and family’ function do not charge the seller any fees and are ineligible for this protection, meaning the funds cannot be retrieved if a problem occurs.

Instead, consumers should always ensure they use the ‘goods and services’ PayPal payment option when buying from people they don’t know as this is covered by buyer protections.

Apparently, scammers are telling consumers the payment will happen faster if they go through the ‘friends and family’ function, which Commissioner for Consumer Protection Lanie Chopping said was completely untrue.


“We have long been advocates for payments to be made through PayPal as it has protections in place, however consumers need to be aware that there are some exceptions to this policy,” she said.

“The PayPal ‘friends and family’ feature is designed for using with people that you trust, so if someone you don’t know is selling you something and requests or demands that you use the ‘friends and family’ feature, do not purchase the item.”

She added that the only truly safe way to snag a ticket to an event is to buy direct from the authorised primary seller.