Gmail warning: Nasty email threat returns but there's an easy way to beat the scammers

Gmail, Outlook, Yahoo and users of other email platforms need to watch out as a popular scam is making an unwelcome return. Fake parcel delivery emails exploded during the pandemic with cyber crooks attempting to cash in as people stayed at home and ordered goods online. Now it seems hackers are targeting consumers once again but this time their scam is pretty easy to spot.

The new email, which is spreading across the globe right now, starts by suggesting that there’s a DHL parcel out for delivery.

The message even includes the name of the email account holder which makes it appear far more real as the majority of scams feature a generic “Dear sir” rather than an actual person’s credentials.

Once opened, users are given a tracking number and are told that a package is with the trusted firm. A notice then follows saying confirmation of the address is needed before it can be delivered.

If someone is duped they are taken to a fake website which pretends to run checks to see where the parcel is and when a new delivery can take place. A time is found but things will only be sent out once a small £1.70 administration fee is paid. This is where the crooks are able to siphon credit card details, full names and home addresses which can then be used to steal money from bank accounts.

This new scam is spreading fast with numerous users on social media platforms sharing images of the threat that just has landed in their inboxes.

Luckily, this time around it’s pretty easy to avoid becoming a victim with the cyber thieves making a number of silly mistakes that instantly raise the red flag. Firstly, although the subject line in the email says the message is from DHL, when you open the email and click through to the website, the logo has been changed to read BHL.

Then there’s the image that’s included in the email as it features a picture of UPS truck. Clearly, DHL would never place an image of a rival service in any official correspondence.

Finally, no courier service ever asks for administration fees to be paid and you should never hand over any card details unless you are sure it’s 100% genuine.

Speaking about this new type of threat, DHL said: “Attempts have been made to defraud Internet shoppers by the unauthorised use of the DHL name and brand via email communications and graphics which appear, on the surface, to have originated from DHL,” the delivery firm said in a post on its webiste.

“In most cases the communications concern the sale of consumer goods over the Internet where payment may be requested before the goods are delivered.

“Please be advised that DHL does not request payment in this manner. DHL only collects money due for official DHL related shipping expenses.”

If you have been targeted you can report all suspicious activity to DHL’s dedicated Anti-Abuse Mailbox at [email protected]