An Post issues warning over scam text messages asking for unpaid delivery fees

An Post issues warning over scam text messages asking for unpaid delivery fees

An example of one of the 'An Post' scam text messages.

The public is being warned about yet another text messaging or 'smishing' scam doing the rounds in Ireland.

In this latest fraud, the recipient is sent a text, purportedly from An Post, in which they are told to pay an outstanding delivery fee.

To pay the fee, the amount of which is usually either €1.90, €1.95 or €1.99, the person is instructed to click on a hyperlink within the text and enter their credit or debit card details on a page that resembles one from An Post's real website.

The aim of the scam is not the payment of the fee itself - the amount is set intentionally low to increase the likelihood of the victim paying it - but rather the copying of the person's card details.

Some versions of the text appear to be sent from an Irish mobile number beginning with the prefix 083, 086 or 087, while others appear to come from An Post itself. Some of the messages even display An Post's logo.

In other instances, the texts have appeared in threads containing legitimate messages from An Post. Some iterations of the scam note that the fee must be paid within 24 hours.

An Post says it is aware of the scam.

"A fresh wave of scams, aimed at tricking members of the public into giving away sensitive financial details, has been hitting a wide range of businesses including us," a spokesperson said.

"The scams have hit customers, including An Post colleagues, as well as taking up valuable time and resources as we respond to enquiries and tackle the scammers. The texts often carry an An Post logo and are designed to look like a genuine customer contact."

Advice

An Post has reminded the public that it, like other financial institutions, will never send messages containing requests for a payment of fees or personal details.

"The sources of the scams and the methods used by the scammers change all the time. We have been successful in the past in getting some of the scams closed down," the spokesperson said.

"That work continues but it is fair to say that such scam attempts are becoming a feature of all our lives and constant vigilance is required."

A garda spokesperson encouraged members of the public to spread awareness of the scam, particularly to older and vulnerable family members and friends.

If someone is sent one of the fraud texts, Gardaí advice is to delete it immediately.

"If you have fallen victim to this scam, alert your financial institution without delay and report the matter to gardaí," a garda spokesperson said.

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