Scamming has been really common especially in the game CS:GO forcing Valve to make superior security measures in order to protect skins of it’s users. Since then Valve has introduced new features like 7-day trade limit, Steam Mobile Authentication and of course the newest one, escrow.

Here I’ll enlist some of the most common, mostly every possible method of scamming in CS:GO:

1. Basic virus link scam.

Basically, he’ll try to add you and if you accept him he’ll say something like “Hi mate! I want to trade with you, any items of interest here? [URL seemingly to a .png]” and if you click in that URL, it’ll download a virus and if you open it, rip items basically.

2. Tournament Scam

“[Scammer]: Hey! We’re going to play on tournament and need someone who could join our team as standin, as we have lost our 5th player. Can you help me?”
More recently, several fake CS:GO Tournament websites have been used to attempt to phish someone. Someone (usually not an automated bot, but a real person) will add you and tell you that they need a 5th player to compete in a tournament that is about to start because one of their players dropped out. They will then tell you that it’s not on CEVO or FaceIt or ESEA, but on a smaller client (for example “World Cyber Arena”) and they will tell you to go to a website where you will have to register. Either at the moment you arrive on this website, or when you click “register”, it will download a virus or ask you to enter your Steam account details (both can happen).

3. Steam Phishing Sites.

Well, Valve operates the following websites for Steam. If you are prompted with a login page, the first part of the URL within the browser will always be one of the following domains:


BE CAREFUL! Because some people has domains like “https://steamcomunity.com” And maybe it seems legit if you just take a quick look at it, but if you continue you will notice that there’s 1 “m” missing.

4. Keyloggers

Yet another common way for account hijackers (in this case hackers) to get access to your account by creating keyloggers. Try it:

1-. Go on YouTube
2-. Search for “Free Counter-Strike: Global Offensive items/Free Team Fortress 2 Items/Free Steam Duplication Hack”.

There’s no real way to protect yourself from this, besides not being an idiot. Don’t try to duplicate items because it won’t work. Don’t try to get free items because it won’t work. You need to be stupid to believe that shit! xD

5. Third person scam

A random guy adds you. He makes an offer (CS:GO/TF2 keys for a high-priced item for example) for you via steam chat, usually an overpay. He then says that he doesn’t know if he can trust you, so he asks you if you have a trusted friend. Then the guy wants you to tell him the friends name/link to his steam profile. He then adds your friend and asks him some useless questions about trust (and invites your friend to a chatroom with another account).

After that he will ask you if you can trade your expensive item to your friend to see it really is your friend (you trust your friend so it should be no problem). After you’ve given your item to your friend, the scammer’s second account will come into play. Now that your friend probably accepted the chatroom invite, he will change his second account’s name similar to yours, usually adding a . (dot) into the end of your name so that there wont be YOURNAME (2) when trading.

And after that, he will send a trade invite to your friend and your friend will probably give the item back to “you” (the scammer’s 2nd account with a name similar to yours).

6. Valve Employee Impersonation

Not so common (atleast, not for me) but it’s still out there. In this method, people will try to scam items by telling you that they’re an employee and that you got reported for duping/scamming/… and that they want to “scan” your items. Valve employees and Steam Community Moderators will NEVER ask or threaten you for your Steam account credentials, CD key, or credit card information. They will also never threaten to punish users for refusing to make trades or to click on links.

Chat conversations will go like this:

Hi sir. I’m a Valve employee and you got reported for duplicating items

In order to make sure that you didn’t actually do anything wrong, I’m going to need you to give me “Item here” with the original ID of “01101000 01101001”. In our database there are 2 items with this original ID.

7. Money Scams

Another common one. People will add you and ask if you want to trade and send you either a trade offer or a trade request and ask for your (rare) item. Then, once you’ve added your item they will probably accept and type in the chat that they will pay you the money after you’ve accepted the trade and they have received the item. Only do this if it’s a really trusted buyer/seller.

8. Quickswitching

I’ve seen this method a couple of times already, happened like 5 times already to me. This involves the victim thinking they’re getting one item but gets another instead. While in a trade, a scammer will put up the desired item. Without the victim noticing, he’ll quickly switch it to another item of less value that looks similar. A common attempt is switching an expensive unusual hat with a much cheaper unusual version of that hat; the item will look the same in the trade window but have a different effect. The item might also be renamed so that chat window of the trade that updates when items are removed/added looks less suspicious. After trading, the victim is left with the switched item. This scam often involves misdirection; they’ll ask a question in Steam chat so the victim switches windows and then the scammer will swap the item while the victim is typing. They might also ask the victim to add another item or remove one of them, or add and remove many items themselves to mask the visible chatlog from showing that they’ve switched the item. With updates to Steam trading this has become easier to notice. Any change in items is shown in the trade chatlog and any change after you have readied up on the trade will stop you from accepting the trade. Always take your time in trades, and double check all items after you have clicked “ready”.

9. Chargebacks

-Scammer adds Trader on Steam
-Scammer asks for item, says he’ll pay with PayPal
-Scammer pays via Paypal, Trader sees it and knows he has the money
-Trader trades Scammer, adds the item, accepts the trade
-Scammer chargebacks the money and blocks/removes Trader
-Trader is left with no money and one less item

10. Invoices

An invoice is a method for a seller to request payment from a buyer, and there are scams designed to take advantage of people’s familiarity and lack of familiarity with the process. The following covers Paypal, a popular service that can send invoices.

With a Paypal Invoice, sellers are able to customize the contents of an invoice they are planning to send to a buyer. They can list the items they are selling, the quantity, unit price, and amount, all leading to a total amount for the invoice. Additionally, there are “Terms and conditions” and “Note to recipient” sections where they can add in more details about the transaction. Because sellers are free to write whatever they want in these two sections, businesses who use Paypal Invoice will write down the conditions of the transactions so customers will understand them before purchasing goods from them. Scammers take advantage of these two sections by writing in such a way that misleads buyers into thinking the invoice is a payment method.

In the “Terms and Conditions,” they may write variations and combinations of the following statement: “This is a Paypal Gift. Gifts are non-refundable. It may take up to 24 hours to process and reflect in your Paypal balance. Paypal has you covered.” All of this is written by the scammer to mislead the reader into thinking that the invoice is actually a “Paypal Gift” payment system with Paypal’s terms and conditions. The “Note to recipient” section may have similar wording that suggests Paypal is more involved in the transaction than the service actually provides. With these set in place, scammers will send invoices to potential victims.

One version of the scam involves the scammer who is the buyer sending an invoice to the seller. Because of the wording in the two sections in the invoice, it would suggest that the seller would have to pay the scammer. The solution is to ignore the invoice.

Another scam involves the scammer who is the buyer offering to pay first to the seller.
1. Scammer offers to pay for item prior to trade.
This would instill a sense of ease in the seller for not having to worry about being paid.
2. Scammer sends an invoice disguised as a fake Paypal Gift statement.
Remember that it should be the seller who sends an invoice to the buyer, but what the scammer does is after sending the invoice to the seller, he will mark it as paid. Marking it as paid does not mean a transaction has taken place, but it will show up to the seller as though one has been made.
3. Seller thinks that he has been paid.
By reading the “Terms and conditions” and “Note to recipient,” the seller will believe that he has been paid through a Paypal gift process. Furthermore, because the term says the gift is non-refundable or can’t be chargedback, he will be mislead into thinking that he will not be a victim of a chargeback scam (even though he’s about to become the victim of another scam).
4. Seller then trades item with scammer.
What the seller failed to notice is that his Paypal balance has not changed, so he has not actually been paid. Even if the seller did notice, because the misleading “Terms and conditions” created by the scammer states that Paypal Gift payments may take up to 24 hours to process, he may think that it will take a while before his Paypal balance is updated.
5. Result is that the scammer has received an item from the seller and the seller did not receive payment.

11. Middleman Injection

After a trade that takes place partially outside Steam has been agreed to, a middleman needs to be chosen. The scammer will suggest a trusted middleman that checks out correctly on SteamRep. However, once the victim agrees to the middleman a fake account pretending to be that middleman adds the victim. Once the unaware victim completes their side of the transaction, believing that they are using a trusted middleman, both the scammer and accomplice will delete and block them while keeping the stolen goods. Make sure you personally add the middleman yourself, and independently verify the identity of the person who added you using the instructions above (look up both accounts on SteamRep and compare). If you’re not listed in the friends list of the actual trusted middleman, you’re dealing with a scammer. You need to check the MM out yourself – that means you click on the MM’s profile and copy/paste their profile URL into SteamRep and verify that it’s the person they say they are.

12. SSFN scam

Another way hackers want to scam you is by asking you to upload your SSFN file to their fake steamcommunity site. You’ll (once again) get added by a random bot and he’ll ask you the following (or something like it):

[Scammer] : Hi. My friend want to trade with you.

http://Steam phishing domain/id/Example/

Add him.


Once you upload the file (which you should not do), the hacker will be able to log into your account (which you have entered in the login option) and also put the SSFN file in his folder and not get the Steam Guard protection.

13. ESEA Crack

Sometimes, when you’re playing competitive Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, you meet a nice dude who you’d like to play with again. What you don’t know is that sometimes that dude has bad intentions. This rarely happens, but if it ever happens this is how it will most likely go:

The guy who added you will do everything to be nice to you: offer you some items for free, play matches with you, etc…

After a while, he’ll ask if you have ever played on ESEA or if you know about it. You probably have heard about it, but since you’re playing competitive, you don’t have a subscription for it. The scammer knows this and will use it against you.

He will ask you if you want it for free. Meanwhile, behind the scenes, the file he wants to send you is a Steam stealer.

14. Your friend is looking for you

An older account will be hijacked, and send you a friend request. If you accept, after several days, they message you with something similar to the following:

“Hello Mate your old friend ask you to add him, he got eror when he trying to add you and he ask me to ask you to add him :3 {LINK REDACTED FOR SAFETY} just copy link to your browser and press the button “Add on Steam” he is waiting for you and spamming to me”

Some may notice the link leads to a misspelling of steamcommunity.com right away, but somebody reading faster might not. It leads to a mock up page, and if you click Add Friend, as they request, it downloads a file called “Steamguard.exe”. This file is not legit, and Virustotal reports it as a trojan.

15. Team speak scam

Recently, there’s been an influx of Team speak related scams going around. The principle is simple:

Somebody adds you on Steam after playing a game of CS:GO (most common) or TF2. They’ll act nice, sometimes even play a couple of competitive games with you. After a while, he’ll ask if you want to chat via TeamSpeak. Since he’s been nice to you for a couple of days, you’ll be reluctant, but still agree. When joining the IP he gave you you’ll receive a message saying that your TeamSpeak is outdated, your sound drivers are outdated, …

16. Steam Wallet code scam

The scammer will basically tell you that he got a “x” Dollars/Euros Steam Wallet code and he wants to trade it for your rare item. It’s quite stupid because why would he trade when he can buy your item entering the code in his steam account.

With the introduction of Steam mobile authentication, most of these scamming methods don’t work. You have to confirm everything you do from the Steam mobile app if you have authenticator enabled. Valve has indeed done a good job in protecting the skins of people, and they had to do it as people do spend loads of money in order to purchase the skins.

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