Royal Mail sends urgent warning to millions of UK customers over new delivery scam

The public has been reminded to remain vigilant after a new Royal Mail scam has emerged, where customers are falsely asked to pay before receiving their parcels.

By Lizzie Day
Thursday, 25th February 2021, 8:25 am

Customers reported the phishing scam after they received texts or emails informing them that they can only obtain the parcel sent to them if they pay a fee.

The company has urged people to not send money to anyone posing as Royal Mail and remain vigilant about any suspicious looking communication.

In the fraudulent message, a seemingly legitimate link takes readers to a fake Royal Mail website – which falsely claims the receiver needs to pay a £2.99 shipping fee before the item can be delivered to their home address.

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A Royal Mail logo is seen outside a sorting office on February 14, 2021. (Photo by Nathan Stirk/Getty Images)

While scammers threaten that “action will be taken” if people do not pay up, the link provided for customers to pay the fraudulent fee is then used by criminals to obtain sensitive information such as your credit card details which will then be used to drain your personal bank account.

The email/text which claims customers owe the company a fee for their delivery reads: “Royal Mail: your package has a £2.99 shipping fee, to pay this now visit…

"Actions will be taken if you do not pay this fee.”

A Royal Mail spokesperson urged people to not fall for the phishing scam this week, after they were notified about the message impersonating them.

Customers were reminded that fraudsters often use impersonal and general subjects or greetings such as “Attention Royal Mail Customer” along with a forged email address such as "[email protected]”, but this does not indicate that an email has come from Royal Mail.

In a statement a spokesperson said: “Royal Mail will only send email and SMS notifications to customers where the sender has requested this when using our trackable products that offer this service.

“The only time we would ask customers to make a payment in an email or SMS is if a customs fee is due.

“In this case, we will also leave a grey card telling them there’s a fee to pay, either for the international customs fee or a surcharge for an underpaid item, before we can release the item.

“Royal Mail Group works hard to prevent and detect fraud.”

In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a digital subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Nancy Fielder, editor.