Within the first few months of this year, Citizen’s Advice have stated that nearly 40 million people have already been targeted by scammers.
Nearly half of these (49%) have been delivery scams, so with this in mind, we have compiled the most common ones to look out for, and how to report them.
Amazon delivery scam
Be on the lookout for an Amazon delivery ‘brushing’ scam. This involves receiving a parcel from Amazon that you didn’t order.
As part of the scam, fraudsters will acquire your name and address (either through legitimate means or illegally) and use it set up a fake Amazon account. Then they’ll place orders for goods that they’re selling on Amazon and get them delivered to your address. This allows them to use the fake account to write what appear to be genuine reviews. The aim is to help boost their business’s ratings and sell more of their products online.
What to look out for
Historically, many of these unsolicited parcels have contained seeds. More recently, there have been reports of people receiving ‘Suzhichou’ branded scarves they didn’t order. However, there is no single set item you might receive as part of a ‘brushing’ scam – you could receive anything.
Keep an eye out for any unexpected parcel deliveries addressed to you. If you receive a parcel that doesn’t have a return address, it could be a scam.
How to report it to Amazon
If you’ve received an unsolicited package from Amazon, first, you should check if any of your friends and family have sent you anything. If not, you should:
- Change your Amazon password
- Report it to Amazon by getting in touch with their Customer Service department
Note: you can keep, dispose or donate the item if you wish.
DPD parcel delivery scam
Text scams (smishing scams) and email scams (phishing scams) are designed to encourage victims to enter their details (such as usernames, passwords and bank details). Fraudsters will then use these details for their own personal gain.
With a DPD parcel scam, you will usually receive a text or email claiming that DPD has tried to deliver a package to you, but you weren’t in. You’ll then be directed to a link where you’ll be asked to insert your details to pay for the parcel to be redelivered – even though the parcel doesn’t exist.
What does a DPD scam look like?
If the sender’s email address is not dpd.co.uk, dpdlocal.co.uk or dpdgroup.co.uk, then you can be confident that the email has not come from DPD themselves.
Also, DPD links should always be either www.dpd.co.uk/ or www.dpdlocal.co.uk/.
How to report it to DPD
If you think you’ve been targeted by the DPD parcel delivery scam, contact DPD on 0121 275 0500.
Evri (formerly Hermes) delivery scam
The Evri scam works in the same way as the DPD one in that fraudsters are sending text messages and emails to unsuspecting victims. They usually state that there's a problem with their parcel, delivery address or payment information.
What does an Evri scam look like?
If you receive an email from Evri with the subject “Evri – Verify yourself” and you haven’t got an account with Evri, then you should treat it as a scam.
Genuine Evri emails will usually come from either:
If you receive a text asking for payment, this is also likely to be a fake, as Evri never ask for payment via text.
How to report it to Evri
Royal Mail delivery scam
There are lots of Royal Mail delivery scams constantly circulating via email and text which request payment for a parcel to be redelivered.
How to spot a Royal Mail scam
This type of scam can be tricky to spot as there are occasions where Royal Mail need you to contact them before a letter or parcel can be delivered, such as if the sender has not paid the correct amount for postage. However, they normally do this by dropping a card through your door.
To help you be able to tell a scam from a real message from Royal Mail, they have put together a list of examples, showing the types of scam emails and texts that have been issued in their name.
How to report it
To report a scam to Royal Mail:
- Forward the email to [email protected].
- If you’ve received a text message, send a screenshot of the message to the above email address.
Post Office delivery scam
The Post Office scam involves a victim receiving a text message saying that their parcel has been returned to a Post Office depot. The recipient is encouraged to click on a link and enter personal details, such as their name, address, date of birth and contact number. This information can then be used to access bank accounts and other personal accounts to commit identity fraud.
How to spot a Post Office scam
The Post Office scam can be difficult to spot, as victims aren’t explicitly asked to make a payment. Plus, the link on the text takes you to a fake website that looks just like the official Post Office site. But, if you haven’t ordered a parcel, it could well be a scam.
How to report it to the Post Office
If you’re worried you’re being targeted as part of a Post Office scam, you should report it using the following email address: [email protected].
Scam warning signs to look out for
No matter the type of scam, there are some general warning signs to be aware of that may help you spot when something dodgy may be going on:
Bad spelling and grammar
Bad spelling and grammar may indicate that it has not been sent from an official company.
No personal greeting
Generic greetings such as ‘Dear Sir/Madam’ or ‘Dear Customer’ are red flags, as a legitimate company would normally have your name on record.
Links you are being urged to click on should be treated with suspicion. If you're not 100% sure that the message is genuine, don't click on the link.
Requests for immediate payment
If you receive an email or text asking for money, you should always contact the company that's requesting the payment via details you find yourself, to check if it’s legitimate.
How to protect yourself from parcel delivery scams
Protect yourself by following these steps:
- Stop – take a moment to stop and think about any warning signs before taking further action
- Challenge – consider whether the email or text could be fake, and if in doubt contact the company directly to make sure
- Protect - if you think you’ve been targeted, you should contact your bank as soon as possible. Then report the scam to Action Fraud, forward suspicious emails to [email protected], and forward suspicious texts to 7726 (which spells SPAM on your keypad)
For more advice on how to report a scam, please visit Citizen’s Advice.
Disclaimer: We make every effort to ensure that content is correct at the time of publication. Please note that information published on this website does not constitute financial advice, and we aren’t responsible for the content of any external sites.