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Text message circulating claims you have a package waiting - IT'S A SCAM!

texting scam

There's a scam going around Hampton Roads that everyone should be aware of and on the lookout for.

In this type of scam, called "smishing," (SMS phishing), the intended victim receives a text message - purportedly from the Postal Service - saying they have a package that can't be delivered without more information and providing a web address to click on.

DO NOT FALL FOR THIS!  If you receive any text from a carrier that you have not asked for - IT'S A SCAM phishing for your information!

Attached is an example of one that has been circulating all over Hampton Roads. If you receive something like this, please report it using the link at the bottom of this page so we can perhaps determine a pattern.

Then DELETE and IGNORE the text. DO NOT RESPOND or try to call the number.”

Below is information about this type of scam posted by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service on their website.

Have you received unsolicited mobile text messages with an unfamiliar or strange web link that indicates a USPS delivery requires a response from you? If you never signed up for a USPS tracking request for a specific package, then don’t click the link! This type of text message is a scam called smishing.

Smishing is a form of phishing that involves a text message or phone number. Victims will typically receive a deceptive text message that is intended to lure the recipient into providing their personal or financial information. These scammers often attempt to disguise themselves as a government agency, bank, or other company to lend legitimacy to their claims. USPS utilizes the 5-digit short codes to send and receive SMS to and from mobile phones.

The criminals want to receive personally identifiable information (PII) about the victim such as: account usernames and passwords, Social Security number, date of birth, credit and debit card numbers, personal identification numbers (PINs), or other sensitive information. This information is used to carry out other crimes, such as financial fraud.

The Postal Service offers free tools to track specific packages, but customers are required to either register online, or initiate a text message, and provide a tracking number. USPS does not charge for these services! USPS will not send customers text messages or e-mails without a customer first requesting the service with a tracking number, and it will NOT contain a link. So, if you did not initiate the tracking request for a specific package directly from USPS and it contains a link: don’t click the link!

If you suspect the text message you have received is suspicious but are expecting a parcel, please do not click on any links. Rather, report it and visit from your mobile device or computer for tracking and additional resources.

For more information about these services and other products, please visit USPS TEXT TRACKING FAQs:

If you've been subjected to a scam attempt like this, please contact the Norfolk Sheriff's Office's Consumer Protection Unit to file a report.

File a Fraud Report