As online shopping continues to rise steadily in the U.S., consumers are experiencing an increase in package deliveries. However, this surge in deliveries has also led to a concerning trend – a rise in delivery notification scam calls and texts reported to the FCC. This emphasizes the adaptability of fraudsters who, keen on following trends, modify their scams to exploit unsuspecting individuals for money and information.
How They Work
Typically, delivery scams initiate with a text message or email notifying you about a package being delivered to your address, as highlighted by the Better Business Bureau. These messages often include a “tracking link” that urges recipients to click and update delivery or payment preferences. Alternatively, you might receive a voicemail message with a callback number or find a “missed delivery” tag on your door, indicating a number to call.
Despite the seemingly legitimate appearance or sound of these messages, caution should be exercised and you should never click on a link or call a number from an unexpected delivery notice. Instead, directly contact the delivery service or seller using a verified number or website.
In some instances, clicking on a link may lead to a website prompting you to enter personal information or it may also automatically install malware on your device, covertly stealing sensitive data. Calling back the provided number might connect you to a scam “operator” seeking to verify your account information or credit card details. Other scam calls and texts might falsely claim that you need to pay a customs fee or tax before the delivery can proceed.
Check Company Websites
If you receive suspicious emails, texts, or phone messages, it is advisable to visit the delivery carrier’s website directly or use the retailer’s tracking tools to verify the sender’s identity and avoid falling victim to these scams.
Furthermore, the U.S. Postal Service has issued an alert regarding phony delivery texts, cautioning against “unsolicited mobile text messages indicating that a USPS delivery is awaiting your action.” National delivery companies like FedEx and UPS emphasize on their websites that they do not seek payment or personal information through unsolicited texts and emails.
Imposter scams often involve illegal spoofing of phone numbers to create a false appearance of legitimacy. If you receive any unexpected communication, exercise caution and follow the outlined tips to safeguard your information and finances.
Always be alert when presented with unexpected requests for money, requests for personal and/or financial information, misspelled or altered website addresses, or spelling and grammatical errors.
At Michigan First, our top priority is protecting you and your money. We make substantial investments in resources to maintain the confidentiality and security of your personal information. Use the above information to help keep yourself protected against fraud, but know that fraud schemes are surfacing every day. Stay up to date and informed by visiting MichiganFirst.com/Fraud and monitoring trends on the Federal Trade Commission website.