Cash App holds a position as a leading mobile payment service, but often finds itself at the intersection of crime and digital finance. Law enforcement encounters Cash App in a wide variety of crimes from fraud to human trafficking and writing search warrants for Cash App demands a level of expertise and understanding. This post provides a quick primer about what Cash App is and what evidence you can collect from them.
Understanding Cash App
Cash App is one of the key brands under the umbrella of Block Inc., formerly known as Square. Launched in 2013, it has become a go-to app for millions looking to send and receive money, invest, or simply manage their finances. As of January 2022, Cash App boasted a whopping 70 million annual active users across the United States and grows in popularity in other regions as well. As a subsidiary of Block, Inc. search warrants for Cash App must be addressed to:
Block, Inc. (formerly known as Square, Inc.)
Attn: Law Enforcement Response Team
1955 Broadway, Suite 600,
Oakland CA 94612
Block, Inc. requests that search warrants be served by digital upload to their law enforcement portal: https://squareup.com/us/en/legal/general/gov
Unlike traditional financial search warrants for banks or credit cards, Cash App has additional digital evidence inherent to being a mobile app. Most notably, the app collects information about the location of your mobile phone including your IP address, location of your network provider and may include precise geolocation information. Users are also able to leave a note when sending money to other users that is attached to the transaction. Here are some types of evidence that might be obtained:
- Transaction History:
- Details of financial transactions, including amounts, dates, and times.
- Information about the sender and recipient such as usernames, phone numbers, or email addresses.
- Account Information:
- Personal information provided by the account holder when they created or verified the account such as name, date of birth, and address.
- Contact information including email address and phone number.
- Financial Information:
- Linked bank account details.
- Information about linked debit/credit cards.
- Bitcoin wallet details.
- Communication Data:
- Messages exchanged between users within the app.
- Location Data:
- IP addresses used to access the service, which could potentially be used to infer locations.
- Any available geolocation data associated with transactions.
- Device Information:
- Information about the devices used to access Cash App such as device type, operating system, and device identifiers.
- Account Activity:
- Login/logout timestamps.
- Changes to account settings or linked financial instruments.
- Bitcoin Records:
- Details of Bitcoin purchases, sales, and holdings within the app.
Despite being digital Cash App is a financial service; to learn more about writing financial search warrants, be sure to check out our Understanding Search Warrants series about Financial Search Warrants.