How to Handle Scams and Suspicious Messages

Authentic messages from Etsy always appear in a From Etsy inbox on Etsy.com and are clearly marked with a "From Etsy" badge below the subject line.

If someone claims to be an Etsy employee and the message is not located in the From Etsy folder, or does not have the "From Etsy" badge, mark the message as spam and don't reply. 

Etsy is actively engaged in preventing scammers from targeting our community members. If you receive a suspicious message, please proceed with caution.

Scammers typically create multiple accounts on Etsy and send the same message to many members with little or no personalisation. They often target sellers of high-priced items.

Etsy Support will never ask you to tell us your password. We’ll never make unrequested phone calls without prior notification. Don’t call phone numbers you may see circulating online, as they may not be legitimate.

Read our Account Security Checklist in the Seller Handbook for steps you can take to protect your account.

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How to know if a message from Etsy is legitimate

Messages from Etsy may have varying subject lines, but will always appear in the From Etsy folder on Etsy.com. They will also be marked with a “From Etsy” badge below the subject line.

A message from Etsy Support as it appears in the From Etsy folder in Messages. The From Etsy folder is selected and highlighted in gray in the folder list sidebar. The message is titled “Hi there, thanks for reaching out!” and has a From Etsy tag and an orange Etsy “e” icon on the account avatar, which is an Etsy logo in white lettering on a blue background

This is how legitimate messages from Etsy will appear in your From Etsy folder in Messages.

Even if a message looks like it’s from Etsy, if it appears only in your regular Messages inbox or any other folder, it is likely a phishing scam and should be disregarded and marked as spam.

This is just one example of how a phishing message may appear in your inbox. Avatars may differ, and some scammers add fake Etsy branding. 

An Etsy Messages inbox showing a message from Etsy Support with the subject line “Hello.” The sender avatar is the Etsy logo. The message doesn’t appear in the From Etsy folder

You can tell this message isn’t truly from Etsy because it doesn’t appear in the From Etsy folder

The From Etsy folder is only on Etsy.com. Authentic messages from Etsy viewed on Etsy apps will still be marked with the “From Etsy” badge in your Messages inbox.

How to block messages from a member

If you receive a suspicious message, you can block further communication from the sender by reporting the message as spam. Do not respond to the message. Etsy does not recommend engaging with suspicious messages for any reason. Responding will encourage the scammers and cause you to receive further scam messages.

The mark as spam feature is not currently available on the Etsy Seller app. 

If you receive a suspicious message, you can block the sender by:

  1. Sign in to Etsy.com and go to Your Account.
  2. Go to Messages. 
  3. Select the suspicious message from your inbox. 
  4. Choose Mark as Spam.

This will move the message out of your inbox and into your Spam folder. You won’t receive any new messages from that member, and they’ll be unable to reply to messages in an existing thread. However, blocked members can still purchase items from your shop.

To send it back to your inbox, go into your Spam folder and select the message, then choose Not Spam. This will unblock the member and allow them to message you again.

Common scammer techniques

The following characteristics, or any combination of them, may indicate the message is a scam.

  • Insisting you reply via a personal email address instead of an Etsy Message.

  • Asking to pay off Etsy with a different payment platform instead of checking out on Etsy. When payment is made off Etsy, Etsy cannot offer Purchase Protection.

  • Creating a sense of urgency. The scammer may act like the purchase has to happen immediately, before you have time to reconsider.

  • Pretending to be a buyer who is having trouble checking out and needs your email to complete their purchase. They claim that by providing your email, you'll get a link to receive payment with further instructions. They may also include a fake screenshot meant to look like the Etsy site asking for them to input your email. Your email is never required for a buyer to complete a purchase.

  • Claiming there was an issue accepting payment for their order and sending you a fake QR code through Messages saying that you need to scan it to confirm their purchase.

  • Asking for additional items to be added to their order. For example, asking sellers to purchase and include a highly priced gift card with their order and promising to pay them back later. 

  • Claiming they want to purchase items listed in a link which is actually malware or a link to a phishing site.

  • Offering to send you more money than you are asking for your item. This is known as an overpayment scam.

  • Seeming to not have read or looked at your listing, based on their vague questions.

  • Refusing to go through Etsy Checkout, thereby disqualifying the transaction from any Etsy Purchase Protection.

  • Having a particular interest in an item of relatively high value. Scammers tend to focus on mid and high-value listings.  

How to tell if you're really on Etsy.com

Sometimes scammers try to direct their targets to fraudulent sites that look like Etsy.com. To confirm that the website you’re looking at is truly Etsy, double check the URL in the address bar. The URL will always start with etsy.com or help.etsy.com.

Image shows the Etsy Journal page, with a URL of https://www.etsy.com/blog/grandpa-chic-style?ref=blog

Here is an example of a legitimate page on Etsy with a URL starting with etsy.com.

What to do if you're the victim of a scam

If you exchanged money with a suspected scammer, we encourage you to contact your local law enforcement and financial institution.

If you receive an email or Etsy Message you think is a scam, don’t reply to it.

To report a scam Etsy Message, simply mark it as spam. This can only be done on Etsy.com and not the Etsy Seller app. 

  1. Sign in to Etsy.com and go to Your Account.
  2. Go to Messages.
  3. Select the message.
  4. Choose Mark as Spam.

You don’t need to let support agents know. This will move the message to your Spam folder and report it to Etsy, as well as blocking any further messages from that member.

If you receive a possible scam email, mark it as spam in your email account and don’t reply.

Keep transactions on Etsy. We’re not able to help with payments that are made off of Etsy’s platform. Only payments made via Etsy checkout are eligible for our case system and Etsy’s Purchase Protection.

  • Etsy will never tell a buyer or seller they need your email to complete a purchase. We’ll never ask for your email address in an Etsy Message.
  • Etsy will never ask you to tell us your password.
  • Authentic emails from Etsy will direct you to sign in to your Etsy account to complete an action, like updating your bank account.
  • If you’re unsure you’re on a real Etsy page, check your browser’s address bar. The web address for authentic Etsy pages begins with “etsy.com” or “help.etsy.com”.
  • Etsy Support will never call you unless you requested a call in our Help Centre.

Learn more about spotting scams in our Help Centre and find tips for keeping your account secure in the Seller Handbook.

These characteristics may indicate a scam.

The message or email:

  • Contains spelling and grammar errors
  • Insists you reply via an email address instead of an Etsy Message
  • Asks to pay off Etsy with a different payment platform instead of checking out on Etsy. When payment is made off Etsy, Etsy cannot offer Purchase Protection.
  • Creates a sense of urgency. The scammer may act like the purchase has to happen immediately, before you have time to reconsider.
  • Contains a link that takes you off Etsy

For sellers

  • Asks for your email to complete their purchase
  • Sends you a QR code to confirm their purchase
  • Asks for additional items to be added to their order
  • Offers to send you more money than you are asking for your item
  • Seems to not have read or looked at your listing
  • Refuses to go through Etsy checkout, which would disqualify the transaction from Etsy Purchase Protection.
  • Has a particular interest in a high-value item

Authentic messages from our employees appear in a From Etsy inbox on Etsy.com and are clearly labelled From Etsy below the subject line. If someone claims to be an Etsy employee and you don’t see a From Etsy badge, don't reply and mark the message as spam to block the user.

“Etsy” as part of the sender’s name isn’t enough to mean it’s really from Etsy.

If you sent money to a scammer off Etsy, please contact the payment method and platform you used right away and explain the situation. They may be able to help you cancel or return the payment. We also recommend contacting your local law enforcement. If a payment took place off of Etsy’s platform, we’re unfortunately unable to return the payment.

If you gave your Etsy password to a scammer, change your password on Etsy and any other sites you use that password. Learn what to do if you suspect someone gained access to your account.

If you gave your credit card number or social security number, be sure to contact your bank and credit card provider immediately.

If you have a problem with an order you purchased on Etsy, contact the seller for help. You can open a case to report the order to Etsy if the seller doesn’t respond within 48 hours.

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