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Expecting packages shipped to your home this holiday season? You’re not the only one… scammers are, too.

Did you get a text message with a shipment tracking code and a link to update your delivery preferences? It's a scam. Learn more.

We’ve learned of a phony “delivery failure notification” email making the rounds. It looks like it’s from the U.S. Postal Service — but it’s not. The email says you missed a delivery. But, it says, if you print the attached form and take it to your local post office, you can pick up your package and avoid penalties. The message might also include a link for more details.

Here’s the truth: the email is bogus and there is no package. And if you download the attachment or click on a link, you’re likely to end up with a virus or malware on your device.

Con artists often use the names and logos of familiar organizations to get under your guard. So how do you tell what’s legit and what’s a scam? Here are some ways to spot a bogus email:

  • It tells you to click on a link or download an attachment
  • It urges you to take immediate action
  • It asks you to “re-confirm” personal or financial information

Another sure sign an email is a scam? If you hover over the link in the email, it won’t show the official website of the supposed sender — in this case, the U.S. Postal Service website.

For more tips, check out our articles on phishing and malware. And if you have questions about a delivery by the U.S. Postal Service, visit usps.com or call 1-800-ASK-USPS.

846 Comments


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The purpose of this blog and its comments section is to inform readers about Federal Trade Commission activity, and share information to help them avoid, report, and recover from fraud, scams, and bad business practices. Your thoughts, ideas, and concerns are welcome, and we encourage comments. But keep in mind, this is a moderated blog. We review all comments before they are posted, and we won’t post comments that don’t comply with our commenting policy. We expect commenters to treat each other and the blog writers with respect.

  • We won’t post off-topic comments, repeated identical comments, or comments that include sales pitches or promotions.
  • We won’t post comments that include vulgar messages, personal attacks by name, or offensive terms that target specific people or groups.
  • We won’t post threats, defamatory statements, or suggestions or encouragement of illegal activity.
  • We won’t post comments that include personal information, like Social Security numbers, account numbers, home addresses, and email addresses. To file a detailed report about a scam, go to ReportFraud.ftc.gov.

We don't edit comments to remove objectionable content, so please ensure that your comment contains none of the above. The comments posted on this blog become part of the public domain. To protect your privacy and the privacy of other people, please do not include personal information. Opinions in comments that appear in this blog belong to the individuals who expressed them. They do not belong to or represent views of the Federal Trade Commission.

FinShopper
April 07, 2017
I got one from "USPS". I'd recently bought items from Ebay etc. so the email seemed like a real deal. It said something like "USPS cannot deliver your parcel" and there was a link. A closer look at sender's ridiculous email address made it clear it was all a scam.
Sherry
April 24, 2017
Sherry - I got an e-mail from Express Delivery Logistics & Courier Company - they said I had to pay $1553 to get the boxes that someone else was going to send me - they wanted me to send the money to a bank in Texas
Chintan82
August 04, 2017
I received something similar twice in the past month but via snail mail. The envelope has no return address and the card inside doesn't mention who it is from. I live in North Carolina and the phone number it is asking to call is a local area code (919). The message reads: We are unable to contact you by phone. Please contact us within seven (7) days. We have a delivery for you. Please Call 10:00am - 9:00pm Monday - Friday and 9:00am - 12:00pm on Saturdays. (919)XXX-XXXX Ask for Delivery Dept. Your delivery # is ___ Does the FTC have recommendations on how to stop these or maybe ideas on why I am being targeted?
TysingerBR
October 09, 2017

In reply to by Chintan82

I just received one of these, too, on 10/7/2017. It's postmarked Charlotte, NC 05 OCT 2017, a small plain white envelope, appears to be hand addressed, with no return address. The card inside says exactly the same thing as the one quoted above, with no identification of who sent it. Looking up the number on a couple of the phone scam alert web sites, I found that several other people reported receiving these, too. All identical *including* the *same* delivery number. Clearly some kind of scam going on here.
CRyan
October 16, 2017

In reply to by TysingerBR

Just received the same thing in Greenville, NC. The hand-written envelope really threw me, but now I'm guessing this is just a scam.
Greenville Engineer
October 16, 2017

In reply to by CRyan

I just received the same...in Greenville, NC. The handwritten delivery number threw me as well. Glad I checked up on this.
Antonio
August 21, 2017
I just wanted to ask or confirmed if express cargo shipment is legit?
miss mbmb
September 02, 2017
the Singaporian custom ask me to pay for $750 dollars before there delivery me my package is this a scam why do i need to pay it before delivered.sir david lamberson can i know the problem or is this a scam.
Jay John
October 02, 2017
Would like to know if Thepostaldelivery. com legit or scam business
neptune6
December 10, 2017
these scams are not only coming by E-mail. I received a large APS delivery notice to expect a package from an auto shop. We have no items on order so I will be careful when it comes.
Beaks87
January 28, 2018
I got text saying from track&trace pick up Currys order and a link
Kirst
February 06, 2018

In reply to by Beaks87

Yep I just got one of these too and there is no way to reply to it so it has now been deleted.
Zgram
March 28, 2018
I been scam by email...or site making friend...a few days..then mention here giving me watch.jewelrey,iPhone,loptap...rose teddy beer 100,000 us dollar...I'm shock Bec ever since communication of friend other country this guy who introduce name was peter Philip white,work as USA Special security marine.! But I'm thinking not real it a scam...he got my name .address .and phone .then a little appreciation he will gave that packages a box.that I'm curious it's not real. Ask myself I am I going to pay a Big amount 650us dollar...amount in the Philippines almost 33,780.00 ...then I ask MR. Peter y am I going to pay that if u give it to me a gift it Ur responsible Ur the one pay...and I'm free nothing to pay then he add me Honey this is my African whatsapp 00225 75607953 and i download it because of you,i have started my contract inside ship and i will not come out until the contract finish, honey i am very far from land now.Honey this is my African whatsapp 00225 75607953 and i download it because of you,i have started my contract inside ship
LynLyn
April 28, 2018

In reply to by Zgram

be allert this name too mike philip morgan i know this is fake name.. this is my African whatsapp 00225 75607953 and i download it because of you,i have started my contract inside ship and i will not come out until the contract finish, honey i am very far from land now.
Suzie
December 24, 2019

In reply to by LynLyn

The same thing is happening to me now . he say he was sending me a present just to show appreciation and he deposited 100000 in a visa debit card that he is sending in the package. I am also getting phone laptop and such after he told me he sent it with defense courier service he said his card got stuck in machine so he could only pay 150 out of the 650 and I should pay 505 upon delivery. Now I got an email from them that I should send money to Columbia and the package not even in my country yet. Also I had a man who said he was a doctor and had a daughter who was sick and in hospital and wanted me to pay 1600 for him until he reach home and he said he was a well known brain surgeon then he asked me for to buy iTunes card for him to sell to put on internet on his phone I tell you life is just hard
jjjj
December 13, 2018

In reply to by Zgram

Me too.. He added me in my gmail and sent some sweet messages that I would believe.. Some of the pictures but thanked God .. through my friends they stopped me to send a money to him.. lol! And I sent him some worst messages ... that he is a lier.. hahahaha.. I think we have the same pictures that he sent in gmail.. hahaha
Lina
December 17, 2018

In reply to by Zgram

I got a message just the same but name changes. I knew its a scam because you can't give someone so much gifts, u don't even know and then again u asks ng them to pay form it.....the money u sending me use it to pay for clearance that's what I told him,yet to hear his response......May God charge these scammers wicked
Yheng
August 05, 2020

In reply to by Zgram

Please help me, I am very much confuse whether to pay the said local tax worth 25.000,00 Phil money, I've met a guy a week ago after had a exchange emails, he told me to send, teddy bear, phone, watch etc. I don't send the money yet, but the person called me said the package was in the immigration and need to pay taxes.. Please help me with this, coz I don't send money yet before I will be able to scam.
Chirochick267
September 06, 2020

In reply to by Yheng

DO NOT SEND THEM MONEY! That is an out right scam that’s been going on for years! Block them and have zero contact with them! Trust me!
enna
October 09, 2020

In reply to by Yheng

We have same issue.. i met dis guy also a week ago from US telling me that he want to marry me but ofcourse im aware that he’s not serious about it, but only this morning he told me that he buy me an engagement ring and he will send it (he send me d picture of the ring also) he asked me all my information, i dint know that theres sumthing behind it. i gave him and after he ask me to pay for the verification code for the parcel be delivered. by that, i knew there is something wrong. he is forcing me to look for the money but i told him i dont have anything with me. and he told me also that he put 600$ inside the parcel and i can use it to pay the person i ask for. til now, he dint stop asking me to try to look for the money but I stopped replying him already
hermione
November 14, 2021

In reply to by enna

Same thing happened to me. He said he's a Korean (sending me pictures of a handsome Korean man) , living in Hong Kong. Afterwards confessed his "love for me" , then he said he will send me gifts, even sent me videos of things (phone,shoes,bag and 180,000HKD inside) , but forcing me to pay 10,000pesos for "custom clearance fee" in the middle of the night. Really? I already sensed it's a scam. So I frankedly replied him that he cannot fool me by sending money. Gosh, the world is in the middle of pandemic right now and yet these scammers keep on attacking, for goodness sake. Seoun Min Yen is his "name" in IG and whatsapp. The so-called international courier which is "Genesis Logistics Services" didn't even exists even their logo. They are trying to copy another courier which is also Genesis Logistics. Gosh. It just all happened today.
Mica11
April 08, 2021

In reply to by Yheng

Please help me de same with me on ur case but I pay the tax and the other one to and the other one I did not pay already because is so big amount, I don't now what to do they told me, they report in the police if I did not play 90,000 pesos. What to do. Please help
ksty
September 20, 2020

In reply to by Zgram

impossible . i received same mail but different person .and i replied same reply . i said to him how come i pay for a gift !! hhh he told me i put 150000usd in the package .i told him to pay it he said i forgot my bank card inside the package hhhhh
Ali shan
June 03, 2018
My parcel of Atm/master card cannot delivered at my postal address
GamerSnake
June 21, 2018
Today i recived a message in gmail form Narch ''Order #2188 confirmed'' The scary part is that it has my full name and my home adress. I did not order anything form that website.
japgirl
July 31, 2018
is anybody knows if E2Go delivery package is legit
pcoff2318
October 17, 2018

In reply to by japgirl

I would like to know if E2GO Delivery is legit also, so if anybody has any idea about this please let us know ASAP
Lynyll
November 30, 2021

In reply to by yassy

How about the God is Great International Cargo Company is this legit? Please I need an answer for this ASAP
Nkosi
September 17, 2018
I met a friend online and he is a white guy named George Parker. This guy said something about sending me gifts as he is a business men selling clothes and stuff. He is from UK and his whatsapp number confirms it. Well, he did send the parcel and he sent me a picture of a suitcase sellotaped and the proof of parcel send and the delivery services involved is speed courier services. They called me to say I have a parcel from abroad and the lady that was talking to me was Zulu but now they told me I should pay R2500 to get the parcel. But I told this friend that I do not trust him and he told me to tell the courier people to send the parcel back to him and he blocked me and deleted his Facebook account. Now the courier people keep calling me because to send it back to UK requires more money. Is it a scam?
Marathon27
September 24, 2018
I can relate to that.I had a chatmate from new York.he said he's a us military doctor assigned in ship.I'm shocked when an apex international courier message that a certain JASON MULENBERG sent me a package.and when the package arrived in the Philippines they will emailed me for the payment. I asked them if he paid the bill,they said NO coz he's on a hurry to go back to work that was happened last sep 19,2018.when tgr package arrived they emailed me that the airport staff had scanned the box with a money inside & in order the package be delivered to me I need to pay 17,500 pesos for the clearance fee.now,mr mulenberg still emailed me to pay the clearance tax for his package. I know its a scam.he's very angry with me
kakaojonnassi
January 28, 2020

In reply to by Marathon27

What happened to the package? We have the same experience now po. He send me gift and now i receive a text message that i need to pay for the package to be delivered on me. Haayyy.
Sheen
June 02, 2020

In reply to by kakaojonnassi

Hello Maam, i have same experience with you. I have known someone and communicated him through email. He's telling me to send me money and gifts, now the customs in Manila (i doubt they are true) contacted me saying to pay the clearance fee. I know it is a scam. May i know what did you do and what happened to your so called package to receive daw po?
Tesskristine
October 18, 2018
Hi, i just wanna share because i am not sure if I should trust him, I met a guy on Instagram and we became chatmates, and then after more than 1 month of chatting, he said he has a gift for me and he already shipped it in Dubai. But, he sent me a pictures of the items that bought for me. He also mentioned that he also put some money in the box that I can use to pay the charge once i received the package because he said, before he sent the package in Dubai, he was told that I have to pay for the clearance so that’s why he placed some money in the box. So I believed him and I got so excited about the package, so I accepted his gift for me. Now, the package has been sent already. Then he sent me the contact details of the company which is “Asia Express Courier” and he also gave me the tracking code. So when I checked the tracking code, i found out that the package was on hold because I didn’t payed the clearance and the tax. so I contacted the company on WhatsApp if it true. After a few minutes, I received a response telling me that my package is in Indonesia. So they are asking me to send the payment slip before they deliver it here in Philippines. But there asking too much. I have to pay 139,169 PHP or $2,580.00 USD. I was shocked because it’s too much for just a small box of package, and just to pay the clearance. Is it possible that this could be a scam? Please give me advice. Since I don’t know what to do now because the guy that sent the package for me, is also pushing me to pay the amount that the company is asking me.
FTC Staff
October 30, 2018

In reply to by Tesskristine

This sounds like a scam. Someone tells you he's sending a box of gifts, or gold or treasure that he found somewhere, and asks you to pay for shipping. He sends pictures to get you excited about the gifts you'll get soon. Then, you get a call or email from "customs" or the "shipping company" or someone else, and they demand money before you can have the box. Your friend didn't warn you this was going to happen, and he might start pressuring you - or begging you - to pay the fees to get the box.

Except - the "customs" or "shipping company" people are really him, or his friends. They're all working together to get your money. There really isn't any box of gifts, gold or treasure. This is all a story to get more of your money.

Fastnfurious
December 17, 2018

In reply to by Tesskristine

I just faced the same scenario as well. But this time round he worked fast, it's only within a week. I guess because Xmas is round the corner. I am hesitant to go online to check out the asiaexpress courier site, as I already knew it is a scam from the way he keep following new ladies in Instagram every other hour but claims that he is only talking to me.. He uses the profile name Derick Tori. Canadian. British airways pilot.
Greekgirl
January 20, 2020

In reply to by Tesskristine

Same thing happened to me exactly im from Greece did he say his name? Today the " company 1677" asked for a claiming fee of 850euro
Bless
April 22, 2020

In reply to by Tesskristine

Hi, I think we met the same guy.Can I have the name please? Is he also said that he will hunt you in case there's something happened with that box because it is really precious for him? Thanks.
cpc
November 09, 2018
I also have a chat mate and his name is tom dalton a US Marine and after less a month his send a package for me and inside of that package is a laptop, iPhone x, ipad,canon digital camera, 2 Luis vuitton handbag, victorias secret lotion,a wrist watch, a ring which he said that our engagement ring and his mother's necklace and also a 25,000 dollar. I was so shocked when I knew that. Then he send me the website of the company where he send the package(www .dalphax. com) and also the tracking number DH8942562Q I tracked it and when the package is already in the Philippines there's an email (info@ dalphax. com) who said that the package already arrived but need to pay 17,500 for the tax charges and if I pay it they will send it to my address. Then they give me a name Mercedes Ramos Seda and her bank account(5576693925)to BPI and I ask my mother to send a money to that account for the payment of the package charges coz I'm in Malaysia but my sister refuse and said that it is a scam. Then I email him that I cannot pay the charges coz I don't have money with me coz it's all in the Philippines and he gets angry and said that I am ungrateful coz I cannot give an effort to pay for that package.
FTC Staff
November 09, 2018

In reply to by cpc

Yes, that sounds like a scam. The person you are talking wants your money, so he told you a story. He said he would send you expensive presents, and then asked you to pay to get the presents. But really, there aren't any presents coming to you. He made up the story to get your money.

Zymer
December 30, 2019

In reply to by FTC Staff

Hello, i have my package frim USA grim my fiancee, and the courier called me and asking 14,200 for the cleaeance fees, the package is in manila now in liberty world courier, the girl who called me untill now noy picking up my call but i did not pay yet.. Is this a scam???
ecc
November 18, 2018

In reply to by cpc

Hi cpc...we have the same situation, really with the same person Tom Dalton he is US Navy as per he says...I always have this gut feeling and doubt along the way, and then just recently he told me he will send a package, and when he did describe to me what's inside, my doubts has been doubled cause for me it's too much, and it's too good to be true that he will trust me that short span of getting know...but anyways, I'm thankful that I've decided to really search it well and I found out this site, and read your mail..
JH
November 21, 2018

In reply to by cpc

How it goes then?have u seen him in photos and talk with other messages apps or just emails?
jm
January 07, 2019

In reply to by cpc

o my god thank you so much for this information i got this too im thankful that my cousin told me to stop sending an email to him,this is the exactly word he said to me i didnt send the money for him because from the very start i since that this guy is a scam i already find him in truthfinder thank you so much.
Joiceamazing
September 20, 2020

In reply to by cpc

Hi got same scenario now.. Weve been changing email for like 2weeks and he said that he is a Captin of the US navy. Hes name is Brighton claiborne and he sent me this gifts This is the content : (1) one iphone x phone (2) gucci watch and rose flower (3) one apple laptop (4) two louis vuitton hand bag (5) one apple 4 ipad (6) two packets of chocolate (7) a digital camera (8) gold engagement ring Now the Nippon Cargo emailed me that I should pay 15700 for the Tax clearance. Is this a scam?
Day tabanda
December 04, 2020

In reply to by Joiceamazing

I have a chat mail also name Brighton Claiborne he said he is a Captain of US Navy we also chatted for almost one week..i dont know if is this real or scam..