11-20-23.-Zelle, the well-known peer-to-peer (P2P) payment platform, announced the suspension of its operations in Venezuela as of November 30, 2023. The decision is based on the limitations imposed by the United Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).
It should be noted that this tool has been widely used by Venezuelans for several years. It increased after the collapse of the bolivar and a long process of hyperinflation that promoted the dollarization of the country.
This tool can be used for illegal operations when the source of the funds is unknown, so banks like Wells Fargo and CHASE have already prevented the use of this platform in Venezuela.
These restrictions can be linked to improper practices, such as using personal accounts to receive payments from businesses and lending accounts for deposits to third parties.
The problem with scams is that Zelle is the lead company in handling the initiation of refunds to victims. This led to a legal battle in the United States.
However, the situation has spread around the world, and in the case of Venezuela, the increase in scams and complaints has prompted US banks to limit the use of the application.
This payment system is owned by seven of the largest banks in the United States, which announced this month that they will return money to victims of scams starting June 30, 2023. Although there is no law holding Zelle to responsible for carrying out these payments, the banking entities behind the platform do not want to be involved in this scandal and prefer to take responsibility.
The financial community and Zelle users in Venezuela are currently facing uncertainty about the future of the application in the country. While the platform seeks to solve the challenges associated with financial risks and scams around the world.