WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — With more package deliveries en route thanks to holiday shopping, it's important to know when the delivery company is trying to contact you, versus when a scammer is trying to get your information.
Palm Beach County resident Laura Stockel told WPTV there's a text going around this year where the sender is claiming to be a delivery company, like the United States Postal Service, letting people know their delivery is being rescheduled.
"I got a text message from USPS that I had a delivery scheduled but had been re-routed for some reason and to click on the link below to check on the delivery and confirm [the] delivery address," Stockel said. "It has a full phone number up here, which it shouldn't. It should only be four to five digits. And the UPS itself is in bold. They wouldn't do that, and then, as you can see, it has a bit link."
USPS confirmed the text was not from them.
Click here for a link to information on the USPS Inspection Service website.
"Most people who get a lot of deliveries probably won’t think twice about it, especially during the holiday season, since everybody is getting stuff delivered at that point," Stockel said.
Former FBI agent Stuart Kaplan said all it takes is a small percentage of people to fall victim and the consequences can be devastating.
"On any given day, it's thousands upon thousands of text messages that are cast out into the general population," Kaplan said. "I think the elderly are perhaps more vulnerable."
According to the Federal Trade Commission, there have been nearly 30,000 fraud reports in 2022.
"Immediately contact what would have been the legitimate source of that text, which it's a financial institution, airline carrier or otherwise," Kaplan said. "Not only would I delete that, but I would make a note and go into your smartphone, they all have the ability to block that number so that individual can no longer try to perpetrate this type of criminal activity.”
Frauds can be reported to local police or the Federal Trade Commission.