October 1, 2014

Post Office warns about email scam

The U.S. Postal Service is warning about an e-mail scam that makes it appear the recipient must take action on a parcel or package delivery.

Steve Stebbins, with the Postal Inspection Service in South Carolina says the e-mails look like they’re from the post office, but they’re not.

Typically, the emails say that the sender has parcels ready or that they are about to be charged for online postage or owe some extra money on their parcels that they have mailed.

“In these bogus e-mails, there’s links,” Stebbins told Columbia affiliate WVOC, “And, of course, that’s where the scammers get you.”

Once you click on those links or attachments, Stebbins says a malicious virus can be downloaded to your computer that steals personal information and helps the scammer commit identity theft.

“Right now, our federal agents with the Postal Inspection Service are working with the IT folks with the Post Service in an attempt to track down the source of these scammers,” Stebbins added.

Stebbins says if you receive a questionable e-mail, check with the Postal Service to make sure it’s authentic. There is a toll-free number (1-800-ASK-UPS) you can call or you can e-mail the Postal Inspection Service (spam@uspis.gov) to verify an email’s authenticity.

There’s also a toll-free number (1-877-876-2455) where you can report other types of mail fraud.

David Waterman of Columbia affiliate WVOC contributed to this report.