The USPS issued an alert earlier this year regarding a new email scam, which appears to be sent from members of the organization, and is instead being used by fraudsters.
The email will appear to be sent by USPS, but the actual email domain will be a personal account with a link to a potentially dangerous website. Local USPS users have reported receiving several such emails in the last few weeks. It is expected that this sort of scam will ramp up even more as the holiday online shopping season approaches.
“Email Scam Alert,” the USPS posted on Twitter. “We’re getting reports of (people) receiving emails that appear to be sent from the #USPS. With this and all emails, be sure to always check the sender’s domain (highlighted [above]) before opening (or) clicking on any links. If the domain is not correct, delete the email.”
Clicking on the links contained in the email can cause a variety of problems, including activating a virus allowing the scammers to steal personal information stored on your device, such as usernames, passwords and other sensitive information tied to your financial accounts.
USPS isn’t the only organization scammers use to spoof. Also keep an eye out for similar emails purporting to come from UPS and FedEx.
There are several ways to avoid become a victim of this scam and others like it:
- If you receive an email you weren’t expecting, do not click on any links inside the email. Even if you are expecting a package, do not click on any links in an email notification. Go to the company’s website directly to get your delivery information.
- Look out for grammar and spelling errors: Scam emails often contain typos and other errors — which is a big red flag that it probably didn’t come from a legitimate source.
- Never respond to a text message from a number you don’t recognize
- Be cautious of any notification from an “automated message system” that says “Click on this link for details.”
- If you receive a scam email, report it to the company the email purports to be from.
- Report scams to USPS
- Report scams to UPS