cuba

Venmo Payments for Cuban Food are Getting Flagged Because of US Sanctions

Two app users were flagged for $11.50 payments for Cuban sandwiches
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The payments were flagged for mentioning “a restricted food or entity.”

Venmo is a digital wallet that allows its users to easily send or request payments through a mobile app — unless they’re ordering Cuban food.

Venmo carefully monitors any payments that might breach United States sanctions on countries such as Cuba, Syria, or Iran.

On Dec. 27, two Venmo users received messages for a pending 48-hour review after trying to complete a payment request with “Cuban” as the description, BuzzFeed reported.

Venmo’s customer service team contacted the users with a follow-up email explaining the company’s compliance with U.S. sanctions administered by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) and requesting a further explanation for the payment.

“Most transactions between the United States, or persons subject to U.S. jurisdiction, and Cuba continue to be prohibited, and OFAC continues to enforce the prohibitions of the Cuban Assets Control Regulations (CACR),” a Venmo spokesperson told BuzzFeed News.

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Twitter users also had similar situations in which their payments were flagged for potentially illegal payments when including Cuban-related terms in their Venmo descriptions.