8 Common DoorDash Scams (and How To Prevent Them)

Last Updated on May 7, 2024

“Ding-Dong!”

You smile. Your food is here, and you don’t have to cook it or pick it up. Thank goodness for DoorDash! 

I’ve run through that exact sequence more times than I can count. I love DoorDash, and not once have I considered its services risky. But I should have been more careful. 

See, DoorDash scams are pretty common, and some of them can result in a lot more than missing food. In the worst ones, people have faced armed robbers at their door or had their identities taken by cyber thieves. 

Customers aren’t the only ones getting scammed. Drivers are also at risk. They’ve lost paychecks, personal information, and their reputation in third-party and customer-led scams. 

In this article, I’ll cover the most common DoorDash scams for drivers and customers. We’ll go over how they happen and what to do about them. No one wants to give up the convenience of DoorDash. And you shouldn’t have to. After reading this, you’ll know how to keep yourself (and everything important to you) safe. 

💯 Act Now: Protect yourself from identity theft related to data breaches by signing up for Aura today. It will monitor your accounts, provide identity theft insurance, and give you additional tools.

Common DoorDash Scams

Photo by Marques Thomas

The Problem With DoorDash 

Let’s start with why DoorDash is so risky to use. Most of the big problems started after May 4. 2019. That’s the date that DoorDash reported a data leak that affected 4.9 million customers and employees. 

Anyone who joined the app on or before April 5, 2018, could have been affected, and this wasn’t a minor breach. criminals that accessed DoorDash’s data gained: 

  • Names
  • Addresses
  • Order histories
  • Bank account numbers
  • The last four digits of payment cards
  • Driver’s license numbers (of drivers) 

While DoorDash upped its security measures post-breach, cybercriminals are constantly improving their skills, and in 2022 a second breach happened.

This time, DoorDash was a little more vague about the details. We don’t know the exact date of the breach, but we do know how it happened. Hackers stole information from one of DoorDash’s third-party vendors and then used it to get into DoorDash’s data. 

The criminals then stole customers’ names, addresses, phone numbers, and partial payment information. However, DoorDash refused to say how many customers were affected. They did say that they have since increased their security measures. 

Of course, we’ve heard that before. At this point, it’s probably a good idea to be cautious when using apps like DoorDash. As you’ll see, this stolen information has led to various secondary scams on customers and employees. 

How To Protect Yourself From DoorDash Scams

Photo by Griffin Wooldridge

Common DoorDash Customer Scams

I’m not saying DoorDash is too dangerous to use, but it has some security issues you may have already been affected by. Understanding how the most common DoorDash scams work is the first step in protecting yourself. 

If you’re a DoorDash customer, here’s what you must watch out for. 

Email Survey Scams

In this scam, customers receive an email survey that looks like it’s from DoorDash. It will say something like, “How was your recent delivery?” Typically, it also includes some incentive for completing the survey, like free delivery or a certain percentage off. 

When you click the link to take the survey, it takes you to a site that looks exactly like DoorDash, but it’s not. Instead, this look-alike site is a phishing site. It will ask you to log in or enter other personal information (like your name, email, address, and phone number) before you take the “survey.” 

Everything you enter goes straight to the criminals, who will use it themselves or sell it on the dark web

Unfortunately, realizing you’re being scammed in this scenario is difficult because DoorDash regularly asks for user feedback.

However, DoorDash typically asks for feedback within the app, not through a separate email survey. Post delivery, you can provide ratings on your Dasher and the restaurant’s food in the app. Be wary of any survey that comes via email, and don’t click on its links. 

If you think the email is real and want to take advantage of their offer, you can call DoorDash customer support. They should be able to tell you whether or not the email is legitimate – sadly, it probably isn’t.

Fake Driver Scams

This one is really scary, and unfortunately, it’s happened. When I first read about this, I thought it had to be an urban legend, but nope – criminals have really gone this far. 

In this scam, a fake DoorDash delivery driver shows up at your home. They knock on the door, pretending to have your food. When you answer, more people, typically armed, either appear at the front door or sneak into your backyard. They proceed to rob your home. 

There are a few ways to avoid this scam

First, don’t answer the door if you didn’t order food. If the “driver” lingers even after you haven’t answered, call the police.

If you live with roommates and aren’t sure whether someone ordered food, ask the driver to leave the food at the doorstep without opening the door

Better yet, tell everyone in your home to always opt for contactless delivery. This instructs Dashers to leave the delivery at your front door.  They won’t even knock or ring the doorbell. Instead, you get a text message saying your food is there. 

“SMS-hing” Scams

This phishing scam is carried out via text message, hence the name. In it, scammers text a customer pretending to be either DoorDash or a DoorDash driver. They’ll ask them to confirm details for their delivery via a link. 

This one gets a lot of people because, more often than not, people receive this text when they haven’t ordered anything. So, they instantly tap the link to cancel the order and reset their account details. They think they’ve already been hacked

Of course, the link connects to a phishing site that looks like DoorDash. And, when you log in, all of your information ends up in criminal hands. 

To avoid this one, don’t access DoorDash via links in text messages. Instead, log in directly from the app or your computer. 

Stolen Food Scams

When people think of DoorDash scams or problems, this is the one that comes to mind. In it, a driver steals part or all of your food order. 

Of course, it’s straightforward for a Dasher to do this, but it’s not common. In reality, dashers want to get your food to you because they want to make money and don’t want to lose their jobs. 

If you don’t receive your food, it’s unlikely that a driver took it. Often, lost or missing food is due to an address mix-up. 

However, it’s important to know that DoorDash drivers are not allowed to check that your order is complete. The restaurant hands them your order in a sealed container which the driver is not allowed to open. 

So, if items are missing from a sealed container, the restaurant missed part of your order – the driver didn’t steal it. However, if you receive an opened container, you need to report it to DoorDash customer support. 

Common DoorDash Driver Scams

DoorDash drivers get scammed just as much, if not more, than their customers. Remember, their data was leaked in the 2019 breach too. 

💯 Act Now: If you are a DoorDash driver, a breach or scam can easily lead to identity theft. Protect yourself by signing up for Aura today.

If you drive for DoorDash or have thought about doing so, you need to know about these. 

The Problem With DoorDash 

Photo by Norma Mortenson

Fake Customer Service Reps 

In this scam, the thief will place a small order. Usually, it’s for something insignificant, like a soft drink or a cookie. After the driver accepts it, the scammer calls them and pretends to be a DoorDash customer service representative. 

They’ll say something like, “Hi, this is so-and-so with DoorDash support. We’re having an account glitch and need to cancel your accepted order. We’ll also need to secure your account.” 

Then they’ll ask for your login information and for you to read back any multifactor identification codes you receive. 

The scammer then logs in to the Dasher’s account, changes the bank account, and cashes out any available earnings. 

It’s a terrifying scam, but thankfully, DoorDash has taken steps to protect its drivers from this particular con. 

First, DoorDash now requires a cash-out waiting period when you change banks. If you fall for this scam, you have a little time to try and fix things before the thief makes off with your earnings. 

Second, DoorDash says they will never ask for your login information over the phone. So, if someone asks you for it, you should call DoorDash support immediately. 

If you let support know what happened, they’ll typically pay you for the order as if you’d gone and picked it up. Then, they’ll ban the customer account. 

Customer “Didn’t Get Their Food” 

This happens when a customer trying to score free food. The driver delivers the food as promised, and the customer claims they never received it

Unfortunately, the customer doesn’t just get a free meal when this happens. It also results in a contract violation on the Dasher’s record. 

Luckily, it’s a relatively easy scam to avoid. Dashers can use a GoPro or bodycam to document their deliveries and can take photos of the food at the customer’s front door. Sending this photo to the customer (which is already required during contactless deliveries) tends to stop the customer from trying this scam

If the customer does try it, Dashers can send their video and photos to DoorDash in response to the contract violation notice. 

Customer Food Pick Up

Customers can also steal a meal by picking up their food from the restaurant before the driver arrives. In this scenario, the customer is essentially impersonating the dasher. 

When the dasher arrives at the restaurant, they must report that the food isn’t there, allowing the customer to cancel the order. Of course, the customer already has their food, and now they don’t have to pay for it. 

If this happens to you as a driver, you can contact DoorDash support and let them know. Usually, support will offer to provide you with a partial payout for your time. They may ban the customer’s account. 

Tax Document Scam 

Be wary if you’re driving for DoorDash and receive an email about your 1099 or other tax documents. This is a common scam, and it can be very convincing

The email subject might say “DoorDash 1099 Available” or “Important Tax Information.” Inside, there will be a link to a copycat DoorDash site. After you log in to the fake site, it may prompt you for more information, including your bank account number and social security number. 

Once criminals have your information could steal your wages and identity, making this scam especially dangerous. 

If you get an email like this, don’t click the links. If you believe it may be legitimate, log in separately to your DoorDash account. You can also call support and ask them about the email. Again, look up support’s number separately – don’t rely on any information in the email. 

Is DoorDash Safe To Use? 

Given the number of data leaks that DoorDash has experienced and the number of scams customers and drivers have reported, you might be questioning whether or not DoorDash is safe to use. 

The answer is yes, DoorDash is safe to use – at least, it’s as safe as any other app-based delivery service. 

These services collect your information, including your name, address, and payment info, out of necessity. Anytime you give that information to a company, you’re taking some risk. 

Most of us decide that the convenience these services provide makes the risk worth it. However, there are things you can (and should) do to make using DoorDash and other delivery services safer. 

How To Protect Yourself From DoorDash Scams

If you’re going to use or work for DoorDash, consider following these best practices:

Avoid links sent to you outside the app. If you get a link in an email or text message, don’t click on it. If you think it might be legitimate, call DoorDash support and ask.
Don’t give your information over the phone. If you get a call from a supposed customer support representative, don’t give them your account information.
Opt for contactless delivery. And never answer the door for an order you’re not expecting.
Change your password regularly and opt for multifactor identification (when possible). That way, if DoorDash experiences another data leak, your information is more likely to be safe. You can use a password manager to make this process easier.
Consider identity protection. Identity protection services can’t guarantee your identity won’t be stolen, but they can help you take proactive steps to secure it. And most of them come with access to identity restoration services and identity theft insurance. 

Given the inherent risk of using apps like DoorDash, anyone with a smartphone should invest in an identity protection service.

I like Aura because it offers fantastic monitoring services, a proven identity restoration team, and high-end insurance coverage.

That said, many identity protection services are out there, and our team has tested almost all of them. If you want to know which one is right for you and yours, check out our product reviews.

Final Thoughts 

I’m a big DoorDash fan and couldn’t imagine giving it up. Yet it’s crucial to understand that using any delivery app carries inherent risks. These services require much personal information to work, so you must be cautious when using them.

💯 Act Now: Aura is one of your best options for protecting your identity, whether you’re a customer or a driver. Get it today for 68% off and a 14-day free trial.

Knowing about common DoorDash scams and following a few best practices, like the ones I listed above, and getting Aura, will help you stay safe while you enjoy delicious food from your favorite restaurants without leaving your couch.

Related: Uber and Uber Eats Scams: How to Protect Yourself.