Venmo is a smartphone app designed to transfer payments from one user to another through connected bank accounts. Venmo is owned by PayPal.
Venmo uses user-provided account information to enable electronic fund transfers (EFT) between individuals. Users have an account balance on the app, which is used to both send and receive payments. In order to add or deposit funds, users can connect their bank accounts, debit cards and credit cards. The free app doesn't require a fee for transfers between users' bank accounts or debit cards, but does charge a 3% fee for every credit card transaction.
Unlike similar apps, Venmo posts transaction amounts, items or services purchased and locations to connected social media platforms. However, this feature can be disabled. Users are able to find and add friends via phone number, email or Venmo username. The idea is that users can split payments for items like rent and concert tickets, and share these transactions and an added message with their friends via news feed on the app.
In February 2018, Paypal reached a settlement with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) that accused Venmo of failing to disclose information to users regarding their ability to change privacy settings and transfer funds, including misrepresenting the level of protection their security systems provided. With the settlement, the company has affirmed that significant changes have been made since the charges were first brought in 2016.