Holiday shopping? Black Friday text scams are growing as phishing has targeted Amazon, USPS, FedEx, UPS, DHL, and more customers.
Be on the lookout for strange texts from your favorite online shopping places or delivery services, as scammers have begun the holiday season with new text phishing scams. Almost all big names are targeted.
A fake email from the U.S. Postal Service has been circulating in many parts of the US.
People around the country have begun reporting receiving a text from someone claiming to be the U.S. Postal Service asking them to pay a $3 charge for delivering their package.
“There are streets around that have similar names but different numbers, so sometimes we get someone else’s mail because it’s just a simple mistake,” said one resident that was targeted until she realized it wasn’t a mistake.
The resident received an email from the US Postal Service (USPS) telling her they needed her help to deliver a package; she thought they were legit. So she clicked the link, entered her address into their website, and almost paid the $2.99 delivery charge that the fake website requested with her debit card.
It’s easy to be fooled by fake websites.
When she returned to the post office, they told her the text message was fake, but she could look up the shipping label online. Then, they suggested she call the company to verify the delivery date.
“We’ve seen many people fall for these emails,” she told NBC News. “I wanted to share my experience because I think it’s important to know.” She added that she hopes her story will help others avoid becoming victims.
“Never give out your personal financial information via text messages. Never respond. For example, if someone asks for money or your bank account number in a text message, no matter how legitimate it seems.”
These scams have fooled shoppers of every age, and six out of fourteen reports submitted their credit cards.
Fake text messages claiming to be from Amazon, FedEx, UPS, and DHL are making their rounds also. Black Friday text scams are masquerading as texts that look real and are intended to trick you into giving up your personal information.
The scam texts claim to be from a delivery service and say there is a problem with their system. Even though scam messages are usually littered with spelling errors, this fake Amazon message only contains one.
The text example we saw reads like this:
“This is a simple way to recover your account,” but there are other red flag phrases in the fake text message.
The sender’s email addresses usually look like long letters, which is often a sign of spam. Amazon, for example, says its legitimate sites have “Amazon.com” after the site name.
Amazon has stated that it will never send email messages with any link to an IP (Internet Protocol) number.
Protecting yourself from Black Friday Text Scams
Don’t click on links in emails or texts that aren’t expected. Always double-check the senders. Make sure they come from legit places like Amazon, USPS, FedEx, UPS, DHL, Walmart, Target, and others.
You don’t understand where that link might lead or what it might download onto your computer or smartphone.
A few months ago, we received complaints about a telemarketing scheme claiming someone else was buying items from your shipping accounts. So stay aware of phone calls this holiday season and track the latest here.